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Horticultural therapy growing into a key program at Medical University of South Carolina’s Urban Farm

MUSC’s horticultural therapy will be an important part of patient care at the Children’s Hospital when the time is right, McMillion said.

By Parker Milner
Charleston City Paper
Jan 5, 2021


The Medical University of South Carolina’s Urban Farm’s horticultural therapy services are enhancing an intensive treatment program for local children with behavioral challenges, helping kids ages 6-17 stay active outdoors with garden-based projects.

“That’s been amazing for them,” said Rebecca Daffron, clinical coordinator for MUSC’s STAR Children’s Day Treatment Program, which aims to stabilize, treat, assess and reintegrate children and adolescents. “Fresh air for everyone is therapeutic, but then there’s also the grounding techniques and being able to grow something outside.”

The farm, a half-acre plot located on Bee Street, grows vegetables, fruits, herbs, citrus and grains under the direction of educator Carmen Ketron.

Children and adolescents enrolled in the day treatment program — a less costly alternative to inpatient care — spend each Friday with Ketron at a patient-specific satellite farm in North Charleston, where they engage in garden-based activities in small groups.

Most of the program’s intensive daily treatment is completed in the classroom with clinical therapists, nurses and social workers, but MUSC’s shift toward overall wellness is placing an emphasis on the outdoor programming.

Read the complete article here.


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