October was a busy old month for Taking Root
Doers’ Get Together
At our second Get Together, we were delighted to welcome Brian from Rotten Row in Southport, a fantastic example of how continued the hard work and commitment of volunteers can achieve great things – something for us all to aspire to.
Our Get Togethers give us the opportunity to put our heads together and come up with some great ideas for collaboration, and this time was no exception, as we hatched plans for improving connectivity and communications between us, began to design the Taking Root Academy to bring more horticulture training to South Sefton, and looked at how we could make the most of the fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs being produced by all our gardens.
New connections and immediate benefits prove the value of our Get Togethers as:
- James from the Inclusion Network who are setting up a new polytunnel met Phil from Emmaus Merseyside who have achieved this successfully. Following a visit to Emmaus to see what could be achieved, Phil has now visited the Inclusion Network a couple of times sharing his experience and advice.
- Christine, one of our Taking Root Co-ordinators, arranged to visit May Logan who were looking for advice to help them scale up their activities.
- Two women working together to get something started and try and make improvements at Hatton Hill are not only feeling much stronger as a result of joining the support network that is Taking Root, they also connected with the Asda Community Champion, who has supported them to submit their garden as a Green Token project, having been successful at the selection stage. It is one of three community projects being offered to the customer vote in January 2019, meaning they will receive a minimum of £500. A connection that wouldn’t have happened without Taking Root!
Welcoming Well North
Taking Root has gone from strength to strength thanks to support form Well Sefton, which is one of ten Well North Pathfinders.
Well North is a socially innovative public health initiative which is creating a movement to unleash healthy communities. In ten places across the North of England, they are inspiring change by backing real people and local ideas, using enterprise, creativity and innovation, to help communities shape exciting futures.
In October we were pleased to welcome Lord Andrew Mawson, Well North Executive Chair, and Mick Hanratty, Well North Director, to South Park to meet some of our volunteers and show them some of the great things we get up to at Taking Root, on one of their regular visits to catch up with Well Sefton partners.
It was a year of firsts for South Park in Bootle. We facilitated a Halloween pumpkin carving and spooky trail in partnership with Green Sefton (Sefton Council). With poor weather, the event was cut short but was still well attended by around 60 people from Christchurch Youth and Community Centre and local families. The Green Sefton team ran the pumpkin carving and the indoor craft session was led by the daughter of one of the St Leonard’s volunteers. A shy young lady with an interest in arts and craft, she came prepared with the craft materials and templates, and helped the younger children make spooky decorations and pictures.