When we have hope, we become alive to possibility. This re-connection can be understood in a number of ways:
Between individuals and a sense of meaning and purpose in their own lives
Between individuals and society
- Between different social groups in our divided nation
- Between humans and nature
- Between those alive today and our roots in heritage and culture
Prime focus areas
- Recovery - To develop sustainable positive mental health attitudes within the hospital and the community through education and empowerment.
- Design - To foster healing through the use of "evidence — based" design, and ecologically sound systems which focus on integrating information from a range of academic fields to promote healing, stress reduction, safety and sustainability.
- Sustainability - To reduce the financial and environmental cost of hospital care and operations through the development of sustainable living practices that will minimize the carbon footprint and maximize energy efficiency.
- Vocational training - To minimize relapse by setting up enterprise models which educate, empower and enable the patients and the community to constructively interact with minimal environmental impact.
Based at Lentegeur Hospital, the foundation is a registered NPO and Public Benefit Organisation (PBO) that is using a range of psychosocial rehabilitation and outreach projects to re-establish a sense of hope and recovery through reconnection to the natural world and to the community, identity, and heritage.
These innovative programmes bring to life the literal translation of Lentegeur: “the aroma of spring” and the associated metaphor of spring as the rebirth of life through our connection to the natural cycles of the seasons.
This work of the foundation is transforming the way that the hospital and mental illness are seen by the communities it serves and providing a stimulus for the regeneration of these communities by the restoration of hope and identity.
The Lentegeur Spring Project from which the Spring Foundation has grown was selected as part of the Cape Town World Design Capital 2014 program and the foundation’s greening project was adopted as a flagship by The Provincial Department of the Western Cape and the Premiers 110% Green Campaign.
Some of their projects include the following:
- The Lentegeur Market Garden Project - Provides a platform for rehabilitation and patient recovery, addresses food security, develops and researches innovative farming methods and offers mentoring and training opportunities for patients at the hospital, and the surrounding communities.
- The Creative arts project - Focuses on the youth in the Child and Adolescent Platform (CAP) unit and the surrounding communities. The primary aim is to foster recovery from mental illness and/or substance abuse through creative expression.
- The Wheelchair project - Provides both education and a community service. Apart from facilitating wheel chair repairs for patients, patient skills are developed in the following areas; Time management, responsibility and accountability, leadership, monetary skills, social and community integration, teamwork.
- The ID project - Without an ID, a person is stateless and powerless. The primary focus of the ID project (ID), is to enable patients to attain their independence to operate within normal society as a recognised person. It is considered a vital component in the recovery process of the individual.