Horticultural Therapy Program Gives Back to the Community

Our Horticultural Therapy team, led by Cheryl Bjornson, recently donated over 540 pounds of vegetables to the Chester County Food Bank. Their deliveries included green tomatoes, eggplant, collards curly and Italian chard and carrots. The team still has broccoli and carrots growing to deliver at maturity.

Since 2016, more than 1,700 pounds of vegetables have been harvested and donated to the food bank.  At the beginning of the growing season, Cheryl selects vegetables to plant and grow in support of this community partnership. Each week, with assistance from residents, the vegetables are collected in preparation to deliver to the food bank.

Cheryl grows a diverse selection of vegetables tailored to a wide-range of cultures. According to Cheryl, “As a Quaker organization, being stewards of our environment and community are part of our values. I understand the reality that there are people out there who are in need. I feel compelled to give back and pay my horticultural therapy experiences forward.”

The Chester County Food Bank garden is one of eight gardens on our campus. The gardens are a highlight of our community and a great way for residents to engage with the outdoors.

Click below to learn more about the Horticultural Therapy Program at Barclay Friends.

Cheryl Bjornson


Cheryl Bjornson

Cheryl Bjornson has led Barclay Friends’ Horticultural Therapy program since 2012. Cheryl oversees many activities to engage residents, including raised bed gardening, floral arranging, management of the Chester County Food Bank garden program, gardening related field trips and much more. In addition to her undergraduate degree from University of Delaware in Horticulture, she also holds a certificate in Horticulture Therapy from Temple University. Cheryl’s passion for gardening spans over 30 years of experience providing horticulture programs, plant care management and education.