Ōtaki College Community Garden: Your chance to get involved » Transition Town Otaki Feb 2015

School and community gardensL Hannah reports

Hannah Zwartz
Hannah Zwartz

Hannah Zwartz, KCDC’s Green Gardener, drew a big crowd of Transition Town members and friends to hear about her recent trip to the United States and Cuba, looking at school and community gardens.

Hannah found that:
Community gardens happen in all shapes and sizes along a spectrum from totally educational gardens to fully commercial operations.
The most successful gardens she observed were the “peri-urban”, close by towns and cities where there is a large enough population to support them.
Gardens need to match their local communities and culture.
Someone is needed to lead and hold the project but also to make others feel welcome and included, by letting them grow what they want to grow and involving them from the beginning.

Ōtaki College garden

Hannah urged those interested in starting a local community garden to get involved with the Ōtaki College garden, where the ground-work has already been done, the potential is huge and more hands are needed. Contact TTO member Claudia Duncan for more information: 021885514.

TTO’s Thursday morning produce stall

Transition Town Otaki’s Thursday morning produce stall has been going strong since it reopened after a Christmas break, on the green area near the library in Main St, Ōtaki. Come at 10.30am if your garden is producing surplus fruit, vegetables, eggs or seedlings that you’d like to sell, or 11am if you would like to buy garden-fresh, seasonal produce.

Environmental Scholarship for Ōtaki College

TTO member Ron Eckman is leaving Ōtaki and to celebrate his time here is setting up an environmental scholarship towards tertiary study, for which he has started to gather funds by “taxing” himself when he buys petrol. For further info contact Ron at eckman@xtra.co.nz

Neighbour Power – Building Community the Seattle Way, by Jim Diers

TTO member Liz Mikkelsen-Malpas highly recommends this book and believes that its ideas could make a huge difference to what we achieve in the Ōtaki community. It explains a system whereby the Seattle City Council encourages communities and their voluntary groups to join forces in fund-raising and other efforts, achieving results far beyond expectations. Neighbour Power is available from the Ōtaki Library.

Belinda McLean

TTO is a group working towards a sustainable community.

It links with the West Tararua Timebank, Energise Otaki, the Sustainable Food Group and the Thursday morning seasonal fruit and vege stall in Main St. TTO runs a mulcher club, with a community mulcher available to anyone after a short training.
It holds monthly potluck gatherings featuring speakers or DVDs, at members’ homes or local venues. Topics are relevant to the theme of sustainability—food, energy, housing, education, climate change. Membership is free and open to all. For further information:
www.transitiontown.otaki.org.nz/ email belindamc11@slingshot.co.nz.