From indigenous healing plants to the creation of a green "sanctuary", there's a growing trend sweeping across Ballarat.
St Matthew's Anglican Church is one of several Ballarat institutions getting dug into reflection gardens and the fertile ground they offer to pause, contemplate and connect with the community.
Parish priest Father Constantine Osuchukwu said the church is hosting a fundraiser concert in the hopes of creating a community reflection garden on the church grounds.
Father Osuchukwu said the idea sprouted as a way to help combat loneliness and isolation.
"The irony is that we are the most connected generation in history and yet the most lonely," Father Osuchukwu said.
The fundraiser follows a Compassionate Ballarat report released in March calling for the creation of more spaces in Ballarat that encourage "nurturing and connection".
"In social design terms cultivating compassion and prosocial motivations are important because they are associated with improved well-being, physical health, stress management and the development of more ethical, social environments," the report found.
A new reflection garden is set to blossom with the opening of the new multi-million dollar Ballarat Hospice Care hub in Lucas early next month.
Ballarat Hospice Care executive officer Clarita Clancy said the garden would be an inviting, meditative space.
"Any spaces for reflection add value to a building, they give the building a purpose," Ms Clancy said.
"We know nature - if we engage with it - makes us feel better."
Ms Clancy said the architect-designed garden would include a labyrinth with "soft, curved" paths and a water feature.
The Gardiner-Pittard garden at Ballarat Health Services' Base Hospital has also seen some love with the introduction of indigenous plants.
The garden reopened ahead of NAIDOC Week planted with indigenous species known for their well-being and medicinal qualities.
Father Osuchukwu said he hoped the garden would be a space for those feeling lonely or marginalised.
"It's about creating those little places where people can come and sit and reflect."
The fundraising concert, featuring artists including Maxine Montgomery singing opera and musical theatre classics, will begin at 2pm on Saturday afternoon.
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