Dole VA Memorial Peace Garden
The Dole VA Memorial Peace Garden provides therapeutic gardening opportunities for Veterans, their families, and Dole VA employees.
This tranquil spot at the north side of Building 5A provides a restorative environment for quiet reflection, mindfulness exercises, and lunch breaks in the fresh air. In addition, the interactive raised-bed garden spaces can demonstrate and educate visitors about the economical, nutritional, and psychological benefits of food gardening.
Planting of the Dole VA Memorial Peace Garden began in spring 2013, with hundreds of plants and trees donated by local nurseries and the Wichita Herb Society at Botanica. The formal dedication was on Veterans Day 2013.
The goal of the Memorial Peace Garden is to help Veterans overcome inner turmoil through garden therapy. Peer support specialists and behavioral health have encouraged patients to come out to the Garden Group, which meets Friday mornings from March through Thanksgiving. Garden Group is open to all Veterans, behavioral health patients, public volunteers, VA employees, and anyone else wanting to find a space of calm and solace.
Master Gardeners come nearly every week to oversee, educate, and identify problems in the garden. Garden tasks are matched to abilities, background in gardening, and personal preferences for jobs such as grinding eggshells, sweeping walkways, filling bird feeders, watering, trimming, and planting. There is also the joy of sharing knowledge and life experiences, complaining, joking, and cheering up each other.
To volunteer in the Dole VA Memorial Peace Garden, please contact coordinator Laura Nutter.