David Jackson is a member of CAFOD’s Live Simply group involved with parish allotment project. Along with his parish and people from the community, they get together to produce organic veggies to share with the charities in the area.
Tell us about the allotment and what you do with the food you grow in it?
We have a full range of cabbages, sprouts, broccoli, beetroot and rhubarb and all the vegetables go to different charities – I hope everyone can benefit from it
Why did you decide to start growing food to share?
We decided to because the allotment was getting into a bit of a state and some-one decided on the idea that we could make a donation to the charities.
Do you think what you do here challenges the way food is normally produced and consumer?
This is homemade and it is different from the supermarkets.
How has this way of growing and sharing food changed your relationship with the community and the environment?
It’s nice to see people benefitting from what we do.
Who helps with the garden, how many people are involved and how do they help?
About eight or nine people come at different times and on different days. Some people like weeding, some like planting, some like thinking of new ideas.
Why do you think it’s important to get different people involved?
Different people have different ways and ideas and some people are good at some things and some are good at others.
Do you think other parishes could do something similar?
Parishes need some-one to organise things and it’s not easy work. You need to find people who want to do it in the first place, you need leadership and need to give people different things to do. The livesimply award was created by people some of whom wanted to make a garden, some wanted to grow vegetables. To encourage other people to do the same thing is hard – you need someone with an idea who is able to show people how to do things and then go for it.
What difference has this project made to the parish?
I think it’s made a big difference to the parish. It’s our 5th year and more people are seeing what is happening at the allotment. The livesimply award has made a big difference to the parish as more people want to be involved