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We transformed a small community garden into a huge growing hub for local people, using food to transform lives: growing, cooking & eating together.

The Community Shop in West Norwood is one branch of a social enterprise that is empowering individuals and building stronger communities, by realising the social potential of surplus food. That makes them perfect partners for us, as they support vulnerable people to be more independent, connected to their community and leading healthy lifestyles. They already make such good use of their limited growing space, with a Kids Cook Club, Melting Pot and Feast Days, we want to empower them to grow even more on site, through all seasons, with a greenhouse and huge amounts of containers. We wanted to build raised beds but, because the site is only temporary, we have made sure that all the materials can be moved easily. So, we used recycled steel drums as containers, and built seating between them to create an enjoyable, social space to grow food and engage with other people.

We will continue to support their members, with regular sessions even in winter, to grow and harvest the crops on site, sowing seed ready for the spring. None of this engagement work would be possible without funding from the Trust for London.

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