Community Fund – Garden Gate – May Update

Hello from the Garden Gate…

Joe Gardening Course[1]It’s a beautiful sunny day in Margate and we are busy making arrangements for our Music Day on Saturday 18th July, entertainment is being organised for a fun filled day… We will keep you posted with our progress in our next update…

We recently recruited our first apprentice support worker, 23 year old Joe Guy from Westgate, who has also become the 900th apprentice to be placed through KCC’s Kent Employment Programme. Joe is fast becoming a real asset to the garden and we are very happy with his progress.

We have just completed our ‘Introduction to Gardening’ course.  This is the second year we have run the 8 week course in collaboration with East Kent Colleges ‘Learning in Communities’ initiative.  Everyone really enjoyed the course and learnt lots of new skills.

Vegware is SME of the year!

Award-Winner-Email-Footer copyWe won! Vegware is now the proud owner of a rather fetching Scottish Business in the Community award for SME of the year!

SBC is one of The Prince’s Charities and Scotland’s leading organisation in responsible business practices. The awards celebrate companies of all sizes across all sectors, supporting and developing business practices that enrich Scotland’s communities, conserve and improve the environment and achieve long term sustainability. In short, helping better business make Scotland a better place in which to live and work.

Jane Wood, CEO of Scottish Business in the Community, said: “This is the first year we’ve opened the Awards to all businesses in Scotland. There’s a huge amount of excellent work around the responsible business agenda taking place within our communities. Picking a winner was incredibly difficult, but we are delighted to have Vegware as our SME of the year”.


Community Fund – Edinburgh Garden Partners – May Update

It’s busy busy here at EGP, new gardens to be shared, new volunteers on board and we’re running around matching everyone up! This month 2 lovely volunteers have completed the more advanced horticulture course run by our super helpful colleagues at the ‘Bridgend Growing Community’. Placing keen volunteer gardeners on this course would not be possible without the support of the Vegware grant so huge thanks from us, from the lucky volunteers and ultimately from the garden owners benefiting!

Community Fund – Bately Girls High School – May Update

The extended school activity “It’s up to You” was hosted by the school for the Howden Clough community and yr8 student Drew Lewis who attends the farm club on a regular basis has been able to purchase some animal runs that will enhance the community farm visit to the school for the local community visitors and school students.

Quail from the local Batley Boy Business & Enterprise Centre have been exchanged for some of our own ducklings and will be housed in the animal runs until the Aviary at the farm is complete.

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Community Fund – Clipperton Project – May Update

11391237_655588970185_1408541143381683097_nThis month, Molly Allam Keep, our volunteer in Mexico headed home after a successful year working with The Clipperton Project.

In Scotland, at Bowling Basin, we held a volunteer day on the 15th May. Nine volunteers spent a day clearing the river beach of glass and debris. We also screen printed re-usable tote bags with the phrase I Love Bowling.

Volunteers visited Clydebank College and worked with a group of young people participating in an access to work class. The group learned about different volunteering opportunities, spoke about their inspirations and mapped the 7 design principles of the World Cafe.

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Tasty new photography for National Picnic Week!

Vegware is celebrating this national picnic week with a collection of photographs showing how our bagasse tableware is perfect for picnics! Bagasse is a great material, and our range is formed from leftover sugarcane fibre after it has been processed.  As well as being sturdier than paper plates, it is extremely low carbon (99% less than polystyrene), suitable for all foods, wet or dry, and completely compostable! So if you’re heading out to the park, beach or wherever your blanket takes you this summer, check out our bagasse collection! Our picnic pics will be published through our twitter and facebook, we’d love to see yours too!

Community Fund – Broomhouse – May Update

ashton cakesMay has been a busy month for us at BHSG!  We started a new term of Adult Cooking – these popular sessions are open to anyone from the local area and aim to boost confidence in the kitchen as well as offer advice on healthy eating and budgeting.  We have already cooked up delicious soup, chilli and curry, and baked some tasty scones and flapjacks too yum!

Kirsty and Caroline are now taking their ‘Cooking up a Story’ to Broomhouse Primary School, after great success in the local nurseries.   The kids and their parents/carers have loads of fun doing songs, rhymes, and stories before working together on a cooking activity. Our Aerobics sessions have started up again too – a fun and friendly group for local women.   And for those who prefer to take it a little easier, there are our Chair Exercise sessions – seated exercises with music and a lot of laughter! Our Friday Walking Group is getting busier every week, and the Thursday Buggy Walk is proving very popular with local mums.

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Community Fund – LKYPG – May Update

All in all, we continue to flourish, and I hope you enjoy the pictures! Please find enclosed some more pictures from the LKYPG allotment project!

This time, we find ourselves getting the crops ready so that the pesky wildlife don’t get at them for the coming months. We constructed a net with the children to help with this!

 Also, we have already started to taste the fruits of our labour, and invited some members of the community to enjoy our homemade rhubarb smoothies!

Plastic bag charge to be introduced in England

From 5 October 2015, England will follow the rest of the UK  in introducing charges for carrier bags. All businesses with more than 250 full time equivalent employees will have to charge at least 5p for carrier bags that:

  • have not previously been usedocean-pollution-plastic-bag
  • have handles
  • are plastic
  • are 70 microns thick or less

These charges have already been used elsewhere to great effect, with carrier bag usage plummeting by around 80% in Wales and Scotland. However, the English legislation exempts small and medium businesses, whereas the Welsh and Scottish charge applies across the board. Full info on the upcoming charge is available here.

Community Fund – Rhubarb Farm – May Update

P5120032_thumbMay is a very hectic time in the growing season, as seeds have to be planted, transplanted and planted out, depending on the weather. May was particularly wet and windy and caused some damage and put back our production somewhat.

P5120030_thumbWe hosted Job Centre workers for a day’s volunteering on 12th May and they helped with horticultural tasks – many of them for the first time.

The English course which is running on site for people with low level literacy used a pond-dipping exercise to learn reporting skills. It was a great way to engage volunteers and inspired them all – practical learning, thanks to Bolsover Adult Education Service.

We started cultivating our 6 acre field with prisoners coming daily under Luke’s supervision – who himself spent 8 years in prison. This is a big step forward for us.