SS2022 Gardening with the Grand Duchess of Tuscany: A tale of how therapeutic horticulture is beginning to flourish in Italy
The Villa Granduchessa, built in 1400 in a park on a hill overlooking Florence, has belonged to many noble families throughout history including Louis Bonaparte, King of Holland and younger brother of Napoleon, and the last Grand Duchess of Tuscany, Maria Antonietta, from whom the villa takes its name. The villa was donated to the Florentine Cottolengo nuns who settled there after the war and provided assistance to people with severe disabilities. Today it’s a retirement home and the setting for Project Demetra, a partnership between Florence City Council and Afam Pharmacies Fiorentine, aimed at young adults with learning disabilities who gardened with Ania and an educator, all day from 9 to 4pm.
Ania will share her experiences of working with those young gardeners at the Villa and tell us about the new Masters course in Horticulture Therapy that she has developed with the University of Bologna.