Sunday, December 16, 2012

Growing opportunities: tales of doing #1 - Daylesford Secondary College Food Forest

In hushed voices amongst ourselves, we've been saying for a while that there's a nascent food growing thing happening around us here in Moreland and in Melbourne more widely. We think more people are doing it, the nodes in our networks (where information is exchanged, people meet and cool stuff happens) are getting busier and it's pretty cool to see.

Here's a bit of raw material for the purposes of inspiration and cogitation, to get us thinking about the next few years and where we all might take this (let's face it, it's up to us to do it)...

Daylesford High School Food Forest

When it comes to teaching our kids about the importance of sustainable, healthy, ethical food production not to mention the shear joy of growing something you can eat, there are some awesome, inspiring, exciting things happening in our primary schools with food growing. Some of this is getting done by parents and teachers or through organised programs like Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation's schools program or with support from other groups like Cultivating Community.

We're building a foundation for the future health of not just for our kids but for their families and our communities more widely. (Apart from the health impact, I like to think waiting for something to grow might bring a bit of patience back to kids for whom everything's so much about "NOW!")

This is all great and we need more of it for sure. On top though, we also need to ask "What are we doing to make sure this continues as our kids move into secondary schools?" I reckon the answer is sadly "not much" but at least someone is doing something. Last night I heard about a 5 acre food forest project that's going ahead in Daylesford at the Secondary College, (the 5th new community garden in the area in 2 years).

In their words it will be:
Part community garden, part educative resource, the DSC Food Forest will be a first of its kind in Australia. It will have an emphasis on growing ethical, local food in an ecologically restorative way and will teach students and the wider community how to climate change proof our food supply while attend to greenhouse gases by growing locally, perennially and organically.
So what? Well, you might be aware that thanks to the hard work and relentless efforts of some folks in Moreland who embedded their aim in their name (High School for Coburg), we're expecting an all-years, open entry high school for the 2015 school year.

Wouldn't it be great if we did something along the lines of the Daylesford project. at our Coburg High School, right in the heart of the city of Moreland?
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