Food Plymouth has a long track record of supporting a range of edible landscape, foraging and community growing initiatives. However, as we all know, sustaining such projects can be a real challenge, especially when any initial support packages fade away. To help to overcome these obstacles – and in response to various direct approaches and similar requests made through the city’s voluntary & community support organisation Plymouth Octopus Project (POP+) – Food Plymouth CIC has developed a support project entitled Growing Community Abundance. This is all about bringing people together, building strong relationships, improving spaces and places and releasing peoples’ potential. The great news is that our funding application for £10,000 to the National Lottery’s Awards for All programme has recently been approved and work to deliver the project is now underway!
The three-fold intention of the 12 month Growing Community Abundance project is around: Building local peoples’ basic gardening skills and social skills, thereby enabling them to become knowledgeable, skilled and confident to help growing spaces and the community groups which support them to thrive; co-creating a core group of experienced people with the right mix of skills to inspire, facilitate and support community growing projects; and providing a network to support these people, co-designed and co-created with them to meet current and future needs. In addition to being worthwhile in itself, the outcomes of the programme will help towards Plymouth’s progression to Sustainable Food Cities silver standard, notably in the community skills, knowledge, resources and projects and the eco footprint of the food system themes.
The first of the Growing Community Abundance project’s four dedicated growing community gatherings with knowledge and skill sharing opportunities will take place in February 2019. Watch out for more information on this and the many other facets of the Growing Community Abundance project in future editions of this e-bulletin and through Food Plymouth’s social media channels. In the meantime, if you wish to find out more or get involved in the Growing Community Abundance project, please contact Project Manager Tess Wilmot.