Bondi View

Community crowd funding promises greener pastures

Working hard in the community garden. Source: Supplied

BY JAZ SINGH-BRAR
A new community garden project in Bondi is set to change the way the Bondi community sees food security and environmental sustainability.

The initiative, created by environmental organisation Transition Bondi, aims to set up a community garden to promote food security.

Head of Transition Bondi, Lance Lieber, told City Hub he thought the project would fundamentally change how people use their gardens.

“Our backyards shouldn’t just have grass, they should have food bearing there, which is all part of food security. So we are setting up this garden to educate people how to have their own footpath gardens,” Mr Lieber said.

“We will be running workshops within the garden teaching people how to compost and grow their own vegetables, so hopefully they can take it to their own communities and do the same,” he said.

With crowdfunding as the project’s main source of funding, new banking business Act is helping the group reach their $20,000 target.

With less than 20 days to go and being $7,000 away from their target, Alex Scriven from Act said he was hopeful the goal would be reached.

“These are all or nothing type campaigns, so if the target isn’t reached in the time frame the funding doesn’t get completed and passed through to the project owner,” he said.

“Here at Act, we certainly hope they reach the goal. It’s a great initiative and they are clear about what they want to achieve.”

“It’s a fantastic space to create this garden and it has huge benefits to both the community and anyone who wants to get involved,” said Mr Scriven.

Member of Transition Bondi and social networker for the project, Aisha Phillips, said that despite the success so far, being able to communicate the benefits of the garden to individuals had been a challenge along the way.

“At the end of the day, running a campaign is always going to have its difficulties,” Ms Phillips said. “We live in a world where there is so much going on. It’s hard to get people to stop and realise that this is something for them, by the people for the people.”

According to studies from Deakin University in Melbourne, the effects of community gardens are widespread, increasing happiness, reducing suicide rates and heart disease, as well as bringing diverse communities together.

Aisha Phillips supported this, and said the garden was a “healthy way to get people together, to appreciate where our food comes from and to work toward a shared goal”.

“At Transition Bondi, we are definitely pouring our heart and soul into this project because of how many benefits come out of it and the potential it has.”

“Because ultimately that’s how we can start changing things in society, by making communities sustainable and working together.”

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