Garden celebrates the carers

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Volunteers from two local charities, Carers Link and Milngavie in Bloom, have done a blooming great job of making Milngavie more attractive.

They designed and planted a flower bed outside the Fraser Centre, which is used as a meeting place for the elderly, in the town centre.

They hope that the display will help spread the word about the support offered by Milngavie-based Carers Link, which celebrates it’s tenth anniversary this year.

In that time more than 340 volunteers have donated over 38,000 hours of time, which is worth over half a million pounds to the charity, helping local carers to access services or to talk to someone about what the daily reality of caring means for them.

Katy Green, information co-ordinator for Carers Link, said: “Caring for someone can be very rewarding and give a lot of happiness, but it can sometimes also feel like a huge responsibility.

“In East Dunbartonshire, one person in eight is a carer, and in our lifetime three out of five of us will have experience of caring.

“Carers Link provides support, advocacy and information to informal carers and family members in East Dunbartonshire who look after a relative, friend or neighbour.”

All of the flowers used in the planting have their own message.

Margaret Hamilton, a volunteer with Carers Link, said: ”We wanted to find a way to use the language of flowers to convey to the public some of the emotions that carers feel. For example sempervivum signify endurance while purple pansies say ‘You occupy my thoughts’.”

Heather Lindsay from Milngavie in Bloom said: “Milngavie in Bloom is delighted to have the opportunity to publicise the work that Carers Link do.

“They do a fantastic job by helping so many carers across East Dunbartonshire.”

The plants for the flower bed were purchased thanks to a kind donation from the Bearsden Golf Club Ladies Section.

The project was also supported by members of Kirkintilloch Men’s Sheds.

Members built the wooden initials and stands for the signs, which will tell members of the public about the flowers used and about the work of Carers Link.