Growing Abundance has grown, well, abundantly since its inception (around 2010-11), under the umbrella and support of the Castlemaine Community House (CCH).
We have harvested about 19 tonnes of fruit from back yards and orchards within the Shire, pruned countless trees and served at least 2500 meals to community groups and events. We’ve created the opportunity for people to choose locally sourced, ethical catering, while providing local, seasonal and nutritious food at the local high school canteen. We’ve distributed fruit to 14 different community organisations and schools, and delivered around 120 workshops and Food Jams. We’ve supported and raised awareness of local food producers through our minimum 80% local buying policy and through our Local Produce Guide and stickers. And we’ve raised awareness and understanding of food security and climate issues via numerous Food For Thought films, talks and discussions.
Generous funding from the Helen MacPherson Trust and the William Buckland Foundation allowed CCH to actually pay some of the people some of the hours they were working, and to further expand and consolidate the project. That funding is finally coming to a close, and we are seeking sustainable ways to become a more self-funding organisation.
Growing Abundance has now become an incorporated not for profit association, known as The Growing Abundance Project Inc. As GA enters this new, social entrepreneurial phase, we bid farewell to the safety of the CCH umbrella, and take our first excited steps out into the world on our own. There will be a transition period over the next six months as we complete our funded project at CCH.
The 2015 harvest season will run as usual, and during this transition period, our contact details remain the same for now.