Growing Gardens, Growing Communities – the Anglicare World Garden
On a sunny morning in Coffs Harbour a small but significant community building project was achieved. An industrious and colourful bunch of diverse people got together, they pulled resources and skills together to build the Anglicare World Garden at the back of one of the temporary Anglicare North Coast accommodation facilities for newly arrived migrants from a refugee background.
Coffs Regional Community Gardens coordinator Matt Downie arrived with a carload full of seedlings and small fruit trees; more cuttings and seedlings where sourced from Northbank Community Garden in Bellingen; Charlie Brennan, coordinator of the Bellingen community Garden Association joined with garden building materials and mulch; The Happy Frog café’ donated $250 worth of tools, materials and trees. Anglicare volunteers, Australian and Burmese, lent a hand; Afghani and Eritrean families and their enthusiastic children joined the fun, weeding, digging, planting, mulching and watering. Pawpaw, citrus and tamarillo trees were planted, as well as sweet potatoes, amaranth, sugar cane, many Asian greens, berries and culinary herbs – Vietnamese mint, coriander and lemongrass.
The Anglicare World Garden will grow more than food. With volunteer and community support, the Anglicare World Garden will continue to grow opportunities for community connections and bridges across cultural differences. People from diverse background will have the opportunity to work together, participate in familiar activities and grow and enjoy traditional food, complementing their diets with fresh, healthy and seasonal produce; sharing skills, recipes and knowledge; fostering — a sense of safety, confidence and belonging.
For more information on this and other Anglicare North Coast community engagement projects please call 6651 8764.