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Sustainable Development

Cape Mental Health runs two projects offering opportunities for people with intellectual disabilities or their carers to generate an income: Beadability and Food Gardening.

Beadability was established in 2003 by the late Mandy Roux. The project provides training in the art of beading, supplies the materials, designs the products, secures orders and markets the finished items.

BeadabilityTen mental health care users are recruited every year and trained over a six week period. They receive 50% of the selling price of each item; the remaining 50% goes back into the project for running costs and materials.

Who can join?
To be eligible for inclusion in the Beadability project, you must:

  • be able to travel independently
  • have good eyesight
  • have good hand and eye coordination
  • be able to follow instructions
  • be able to communicate in  English
  • come for training

Service users and their families can join on their own. We also accept referrals from hospitals, organisations and community members.

Our Food Gardening project was started in 2007 in response to the food crises that many mental health care users and their families face on a daily basis. We teach vegetable gardening skills to enable families to put fresh healthy food on the table, and supplement their income by selling surplus produce.

Training begins with a visit to the service user’s home or an identified plot or area if it isto be a community garden. Different gardening methods are discussed and demonstrated, and compost and seedlings provided if necessary. Follow-up visits are conducted to ensure that the correct gardening methods are followed and any problems resolved.

Individuals or groups of mental health care users who have a need and an interest in food gardening can contact us to request gardening training. Contact Steven Sityo or Esterline Martin on tel: 021 447 9040 or email esterline@cmh.org.za.