Neue Gärten Aargau Solothurn
Ester Unterfinger
Cantons of Aargau and Solothurn

Allotment gardens for refugee women

HEKS/EPER New Gardens Aargau/Solothurn

«HEKS/EPER New gardens» is geared to participants who have only recently arrived in Switzerland as refugees or are socially isolated for other reasons. The project provides meaningful occupation for participants and their children and helps them structure their days. Besides, the women and men are exposed to local customs and can improve their knowledge of German.

Putting down roots in the new homeland

Harnessing their own gardening experience, the participants work their plots largely independently. They learn about organic farming and discuss the cultivation or exploitation and use of herbs, fruit and vegetables. Women gardening experts accompany these processes and support participants in their personal development and integration. The participant's children spend some of their free time in the garden, which is a place for socializing and potentially making contacts that go beyond the garden fence. Monthly meetings take place during the winter. They are opportunities to pass on tips for conserving and processing produce from the allotments, to swap recipes, learn sewing techniques and to discuss health promotion measures.

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