This term, Year 9 Dreamers were challenged by their Navigator to create a project which would benefit their community. The Dreamers began a korero on the things which they saw as current issues in their community. A variety of problems were discussed, from tagging to feeding the homeless. But, the conversation came around to sustainability and creating something which had a long lasting effect. Creating a Community Garden was agreed and developed with the goal to give students and families something which they can take from, exchange with, and see the benefit of, all year round.
The fact that none of the Dreamers had vegetable gardens at home, meant that this was a project which was going to require an entire village to get off the ground. A Facebook post was thrown out to encourage various local businesses and people to donate equipment such as pallets or their time. The Dreamers had to do the hard mahi before they could get their green fingers busy. The pallets had to be pulled apart and reconstructed as vege boxes which took a good few After School sessions. Once complete, the formation of the vege gardens could begin. But where to start? Thankfully the local ‘Whenua Warrior’ (Kelly Marie) donated her time to teach the Dreamers the basics about planting and growing vegetables. Together, the Dreamers planted silverbeet, beetroot, carrots, broccoli and broadbeans.
The Dreamers absolutely loved learning about the gardening process and they’ve been consistently tending the garden since. Whilst we have to wait a few more weeks before the Dreamers labour will come to fruition and the vegetables can be shared with the community, the goal of seeing the benefit of giving back is already being felt. Some Dreamers have even taken the challenge one step further and are creating vegetable patches at home.
A huge thank you to all those who supported the Year 9 Dreamers in getting this initiative off the ground, including (but not limited to!): Lauren Petersen-Hodge, Rob Allen (Allens Group), Will Hohaia, Kelly Marie Francis (Whenua Warrior) and Brent the Builder.
If you are interested in helping our Dreamers maintain their community garden, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.