Our charity was established in 1986 and incorporated in 1996.

Originally it was a small project in the corner of Furzey Gardens, Minstead in the New Forest, with one member of staff and five young adults with learning difficulties.

With a spade and a patch of ground and using horticulture training, those young adults developed skills, confidence and general well-being.

Left: supported trainee working in Furzey Gardens nursery. Right: Tim Selwood with Chris Beardshaw

From those small seeds grew the Minstead Trust which you see today.

Now based in Minstead Lodge, Portsmouth and in the local community, the Trust provides a wide range of day opportunities, residential provision and supported living to enable people to live independently in the local community.

We now work with over 200 people – ensuring that we put them at the centre of all that we do to develop their skills and independence whilst also having fun!

Furzey Gardens enables us to provide work-experience through maintenance of the gardens, raising plants in the nursery and serving in the tea rooms.

In 2012, we took a learning disability team to the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, working with Chris Beardshaw we won a RHS Gold Medal.

Left: cycling in Portsmouth. Right: community theatre at Hanger Farm

We now work with over 200 people – ensuring that we put them at the centre of all that we do to develop their skills and independence whilst also having fun!

We run three social enterprises which support our Step Up For Work programme.

Furzey Gardens enables us to provide work-experience through maintenance of the gardens, raising plants in the nursery and serving in the tea rooms.

Minstead Lodge provides hospitality training in our conference, wedding and events venue.

Hanger Farm Arts Centre in Totton offers training places in the Arts Café and customer service.

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