Growing success with community gardens

Photo by J Garget on Pixabay

As municipalities look towards recovery, community gardens have emerged as a popular way of supporting people and cities under pressure during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Community gardens seek to continue the spirit of togetherness felt by many at the height of the crisis and offer new ways of connecting with nature in urban centres.

New spaces for urban agriculture are also being trialled across the globe to address rising food access inequities, as a way of engaging people struggling with money or work and as a sustainable response to surging climate threats.

In this bundle, we highlight innovative local government food growing strategies and how these projects have nurtured and sustained communities during the pandemic and beyond.

This bundle was prepared as part of our Global Local Recap – find out more and how to sign up so you never miss a week of local responses to global challenges.

You can read more about community gardens in the latest edition here.

Angus Food Growing Strategy

The Angus Food Growing Strategy is a five-year plan designed to encourage and deliver local community food growing. In this blog, Rhonda McFarlane from Angus Council outlines how the programme will work and the benefits to the community it is set to achieve. Read this blog.

Catalysing Food-Innovation for the State: WA local government success

Western Australian council the Shire of Murray and its Shire President Councillor David Bolt have been acknowledged as part of LGIU’s international showcase of excellent local government practice for leading a project that is catalysing the state’s progression into food innovation. Here’s how they did it. Read this blog.

Insights into sustaining European urban agriculture projects

Urban farming projects in Greece, Portugal and Bulgaria were showcased at the recent CityZen Good Practices Week as inspiration for communities and local governments interested in undertaking similar initiatives. Speakers discussed the challenges they faced and how their projects have grown. Read this blog.

The power of public food

As plans are laid for a green recovery from the impact of the pandemic, public procurement of sustainable and local food is an effective mechanism at our disposal. Sarah Duley from Soil Association Scotland explains how public sector food can be a powerful tool for social, economic, and environmental change. Read this blog.

LGIU Fortnightly podcast: Food security and access

Ingrid Koehler and Jennifer Glover present this episode of LGIU Fortnightly, covering food security and access during the pandemic. We hear from Naomi Phillips of British Red Cross about their new report looking into the UK’s emergency response to food insecurity during the Covid-19 crisis, as well as Jane Corbett, Assistant Mayor of Liverpool City Council, who discusses how the authority has supported their most vulnerable residents over the past few months. Listen to this podcast.

Dig in: the importance of gardens in times of crisis

Green space has always been a valuable commodity, especially for those in urban areas. However, amid the Covid-19 crisis, the privilege of access to such spaces has been thrown into especially sharp relief. As we look beyond the crisis, can urban gardens be an important tool for health and resilience? Read this blog.

North Kelvin Meadow: insights into community empowerment in action

North Kelvin Meadow, an ex-football pitch where development was stopped by Glasgow City Council, now hosts an urban wild land run by a community group. The space – which includes allotments, an orchard, and play areas – has a positive and far-reaching impact on an area of Glasgow. Read this blog.

Covid-19: The story of a local plant nursery adapting to the ‘new normal’

Janet Sillett found lessons in the versatility and importance of local businesses during this crisis – as well as some great plants – at her local nursery. Read this blog.

LGIU Fortnightly podcast: Get growing with community gardens

This week, Ingrid Koehler talks with LGIU’s Alice Creasy about community gardening and gives a taste of our brand new Global Local Recap. Includes an interview with Greg Potter who works with the Cincinnati Civic Gardens in Ohio, USA helping communities and individuals get in touch with nature and grow their own food. It also includes a segment from one of our favourite past episodes: a calm walk through the community orchard in Llandrindod Wells, Wales. Listen to this podcast.

Community gardens are the theme of the first Global Local Recap from LGIU.

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