SUE Stewart might never have thought so deeply about transforming an empty space behind Eaglehawk's Anglican Church into a sensory garden if not for the pandemic.
She has wanted to beautify it for a long time but the pandemic has left her with more opportunities to ponder how to get people involved.
"Our church community has a lot of folk who are getting older and while they are happy to help out, some feel they can't do as much as they would like," Sue said.
She has joined Make A Change's Let's Pivot program, which is geared towards people trying to navigate their community projects through the pandemic and come out stronger on the other side.
Make A Change's Karen Corr said it was vital that people organising community projects had support.
"They are on a long journey and what we are facilitating is guided conversations on how they can be more effective - and build those connections with others," she said.
Karen said that it was still too early to tell whether Bendigo was more resilient after facing down the pandemic.
"It's certainly demonstrated there is a level of resilience here already. In my experience people have got through quite well, though I can't speak for every one," she said.
"From the people I am connecting with, the pandemic has almost made them more determined to continue the projects they are committed to."
Sue is among those gathering each week on Zoom for workshops.
She said the meetings had proven invaluable for work-shopping ideas to appeal to groups outside of the church, and compliment other community-focused programs run by the Saltworks group.
Just last Wednesday, a group discussion got her thinking about how she might get residents living in nearby streets involved, how the garden could double as a place for community members to grow produce and how she might approach schools.
"I'd thought about involving schools before but kind of dismissed the idea because I thought a lot of them would be too busy with their own projects," she said.
"But it's one of those things where sometimes you can't see the wood from the trees. By talking about it with a group of like-minded people you start thinking about ideas in news ways."
Karen has encouraged more people to join the program, which runs until April next year.
"We created it to help people participate in lots of ways. Some are simply receiving a weekly inspirational email to cover themes for working through new strategies," she said.
To find out more visit www.makeachange.org.au/lets-pivot