Grow and Share project in Spalding open to the public after government grant of nearly £34,000
A Spalding-based scheme aimed at building community spirit through gardening has been backed by the Government.
"Grow and Share", run by staff from a countywide Early Help Team, allows families to grow their own fruit and vegetables at an allotments site in Low Fulney, Spalding.
The project was given a financial boost before the summer parliamentary break when it was awarded a grant of £34,000 from the Controlling Migration Fund, part of the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.
Clare Harrington, of the Early Help Team run by Lincolnshire County Council, said: "Anybody can come and join this project which is a way for people to grow things, share ideas and form a community of shared interests.
"This money will allow us to provide equipment and access to the allotment facilities for anyone who would like to join in with sharing hints and tips on growing fruit and vegetables."
The project has been running since April and it has attracted growers from Spalding's eastern European, Portuguese and South American communities.
Tracy Cuthbert, another Early Help Team members, said: "We want to support all members of the community in coming together, learning from one another and gaining a deeper understanding of each other's cultures and traditions.
"Allotments are such a positive, healthy environment where children, parents and carers can learn to grow their own food, enjoy being outdoors and spend time together and with others."
The hope is that the project will eventually result in a a community "Grow It and Cook It" book that families in Spalding and South Holland can buy and use in their kitchens.
Project worker Laura Childs said: "The allotment site is full with summer fruits ready to be picked and a range of vegetables that are ready to be eaten.
"Some will be stored away in readiness for one of our planned events where families can come together and share recipes in a multi-cultural cookbook that will be produced as a celebration of the project's first year.
"A lot of people are very keen on growing and harvesting, but they don't know where to start and that's why this project is available to everyone.
"It gives people the opportunity to come and learn by practical experience, while meeting other, like-minded people from different ages, races and backgrounds.
"The other allotment holders are all very welcoming and eager to share their knowledge and experience as well."
For more details about the Grow and Share project, call the Early Help Team on 01522 555946.
. Jonans Sandijs, of South Lincolnshire Green Party, said: "I think the Grow and Share project is a great idea to help Spalding come together as a community and interact with each others, whilst supporting migrant families who settle in the local area.
"It will help them learn new skills and also, I believe, provide a perfect opportunity for our community to learn about different cultures.
"Therefore, I would be happy to interact and support projects like this, if given the opportunity to do so."