Interest in food provenance, community growing, and local food is thriving in Wales and through the ‘Tyfu’n Iach Gyda’n Gilydd’ / ‘Growing Healthy Together’ project, Neath Port Talbot CVS, Dove Workshop and Glynneath Training Centre wish to take advantage of this current trend and work together to develop a ‘Community Produce Hub’ for Neath Port Talbot.
The aim of the project is to start developing a thriving food and growing economy in Neath Port Talbot. This will be done by mapping existing food producers and community growing projects, while researching potential access to land and growers support needs. Skills development is a top priority and community groups and individuals will be able to access a tested programme of community growing training through informal friendly workshops. Hands on support will be available to help community groups and individuals develop into a community growing, traditional arts and environmental crafts business with 1 to 1 business mentoring available.
The 1 year project will be a starting point to inform and enable the longer-term aim of establishing a thriving food and related produce economy for Neath Port Talbot and potentially create a Community Food Hub and a Common brand amongst producers.
The innovative pilot will look at the best ways of helping disadvantaged groups benefit from supportive community food networks through extending opportunities for volunteering and learning in community food growing and horticulture. The project will build stronger networks for self-help and facilitate the creation of cooperative community enterprises.
‘Tyfu’ Iach Gyda’n Gilydd’ also recognises the health and social benefits of local produce and community growing that empowers communities to take active roles in improving their local environment, developing skills, capacity and increasing access to local produce and enable residents to have a healthy lifestyle.
The recent ‘Apple pressing day’ event at the Rheola Walled Garden gave volunteers a flavour of the fun community growing workshops on offer. Volunteers were able to have hands on experience of the apple pressing process, transforming the abundance autumnal crop of apples into tongue tasty juices and cider, whilst sampling the fruits of their labours.
If you feel inspired by the growing success of the Rheola Walled Garden scheme and are interesting in participating in growing your own produce and/or community growing then contact the Tyfu’n Iach Gyd a’n Gilydd Team on (01639) 631246 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Alternatively you can contact any of the project partners on:
Neath Port Talbot CVS on (01639) 631246 or email@example.com
Dove Workshop on (01639) 700002 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Glynneath Training Centre on (01639) 721772 or email@example.com
Photographs from the first Rheola Apple Day Workshop on 18 October 2016:
A Photograph of Cilybebyll Community Growers in action:
Photographs of the Dove Timber House in Banwen and examples of the handmade wooden pieces available to buy from the Dove Workshop made by local volunteers: