Com­mu­nity gar­dens live on

Com­mu­nity ef­forts keep the gar­dens from clos­ing ❝cre­at­ing It’s about a whole com­mu­nity to­geth­er­ness, now and in the fu­ture. — Ge­orge Hart­fiel

Central Queensland News - - NEWS - Kris­ten Booth Kris­ten.Booth@cqnews.com.au

AF­TER a change of hands, the Emer­ald Com­mu­nity Gar­dens are still be­ing run through the ded­i­ca­tion, com­mit­ment and pas­sion of its vol­un­teers.

Fol­low­ing many years of sup­port, Emer­ald Dis­abil­ity Ser­vices is now trans­fer­ring over to NDIS, re­sult­ing in the com­mu­nity gar­dens los­ing its ma­jor sup­port sys­tem.

How­ever, thanks to strong ded­i­ca­tion, the gar­dens will con­tinue to func­tion with its com­mu­nity group that is cur­rently run­ning and maintaining the area.

Overseer of the com­mu­nity gar­dens, Ge­orge Hart­fiel en­cour­ages vol­un­teers to con­tinue to at­tend, to sup­port each other through gar­den­ing and daily trou­bles.

“A lot of peo­ple come here and know noth­ing about plant­ing plants, but some peo­ple know a lot about it – so as a com­mu­nity, we can help each other out,” he said.

“If other gar­den­ers know how to do some­thing then they can pass on that knowl­edge, and peo­ple can bounce ideas of each other and sup­port one an­other.

“Peo­ple learn a lot about gar­den­ing from be­ing here.

“We share gar­den­ing ad­vice and ex­pe­ri­ences, recipes, home reme­dies and it’s just a place for peo­ple to so­cialise.

“It’s about cre­at­ing a whole com­mu­nity to­geth­er­ness, now and in the fu­ture.”

Zoe Birch, who has been a vol­un­teer for more than two years, said she had an op­por­tu­nity to learn from other par­tic­i­pants about the gar­den.

“When you have a get to­gether they can share what they’ve seen and what they’ve heard – what has worked for them in the past and what hasn’t,” she said.

“They give ad­vice on how to cook it and use it. It goes be­yond the gar­den­ing. It’s what ends up on the din­ner ta­ble and there is a story that goes along with it.”

Vol­un­teer Sue said, dur­ing her four years at the gar­dens, she had met some great peo­ple and would love more peo­ple to join the group.

“It’s great for the com­mu­nity and we try to en­cour­age peo­ple to just come down and en­joy the gar­den,” she said.

“It’s a so­cial out­ing that you can work in and around your life.”

Lo­cated at the rear of the Emer­ald li­brary, the com­mu­nity gar­dens smoko is hosted ev­ery Wed­nes­day and Satur­day from 9.30–10.30am, and no mat­ter what age, all are wel­come.

PHO­TOS: ADEN STOKES AND KRIS­TEN BOOTH

GAR­DEN CON­TRIB­U­TORS: Ruth Lind­say, Ge­orge Hart­fiel and Maraea Rapira dur­ing their weekly meet.

Ge­orge Hart­fiel and Maraea Rapira in the gar­dens.

Co-or­di­na­tor of the Emer­ald Com­mu­nity Gar­dens Ge­orge Hart­fiel.

Smoko is held ev­ery Wed­nes­day and Satur­day at Emer­ald Com­mu­nity Gar­dens.

Sue Ba­ga­ley with a cu­cum­ber plant.

Raised beds at Emer­ald Com­mu­nity Gar­dens.

Vegeta­bles ga­lore at Emer­ald Com­mu­nity Gar­dens.

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