I am Jane O’Brien and I am the Chairperson for the Inverell Community Gardens in Northern NSW
We are not-for-profit community group auspiced by our local Landcare organisation - Gwymac Inc.
Our Community Gardens are run by a 100% Volunteer Management Committee and a couple of Team Leaders. We have strong relationships with a number of local service providers including a high school, an unemployment agency with a work for the dole program, an early childhood service provider and a disability service provider. We also have a small group of dedicated Volunteer Gardeners that run a mini market garden & stall every Saturday and a Chooken Team that care for our chooks. We have allocated plots in our gardens as well as a nature playground, a compost program (Using scraps and waste from local businesses) and a worm farm.
Our mission is to nurture people, plants and the plant by
- Showcasing sustainable practices
- Providing opportunities for sharing knowledge, wisdom and culture
- Creating a space where people can belong and feel connected to both nature and others
- All contributing to a more self-sufficient community
We envisage a local FAIR FOOD SYSTEM will develop from our Community Gardens space and we have been having conversations with an unemployment agency to expand our mini market garden into a viable market garden that will provide the opportunity for members of the public to purchase local chemical free fresh produce.
Due to unforseen circumstances we need to relocate our gardens in the near future. We have been having discussions with our local Council re this for about 18 months and on the 23rd May 2018 re will be pitching to council requesting funding for infrastructure at our new site (currently a vacant block).
I feel like this will be a critical turning point for our community and I am looking for any information or advise anyone can offer us as we prepare our pitch to Council???
Specifically - Has anyone got a Governance Model for the operation of a Community Gardens (or the equivalent) in partnership with a local Council?
I look forward to linking up with others that are passionate about ensuring Fair Food in our country
Many thanks and happy gardening