On this page you will find updated information on news, events and funding opportunities specifically for Northern Ireland. You can also find contact details for our staff members and voluntary convenors in Northern Ireland, who are helping to support our work.
You can also post information, share ideas and links and network with other groups and organisations interested in community growing and related green space activities in Northern Ireland via our Facebook page by clicking on the icon below:
Northern Ireland News
Regularly updated with news of interest to those involved with city farms, community gardens, allotments and other green spaces in Northern Ireland, plus details of training and networking events.
- How to run a community gardening session - Training, 12th August
- 10th Northern Ireland Allotment and Community Garden Forum
- Outdoor Wellbeing Network gathering
- Join the Community Garden Network Online
- Northern Ireland Workplace Allotments Project launch
How to run a community gardening session - Training, 12th August (Belfast)
If you want the confidence to run a thriving community growing project or are involved with running an existing project and need more training - then this day session is for you!
- Structuring a gardening session
- Planning for the needs of different groups
- Taking account of Health and safety, and protecting the vulnerable
- Preparation for sessions: managing time and resources
- Linking in with support organisations and networking
The 10th Northern Ireland Allotment And Community Garden Forum
The 10th Northern Ireland Allotment and Community Garden Forum - a free networking event for allotment and community garden organisers - was hosted by The Federation of City Farms and Community Garden and Ards Borough Council in April 2014. The event included local speakers, discussions and site visits.
Twice a year, the Forum brings together a range of stakeholders from all over Northern Ireland and from the South too - councils and local authorities, government agencies, NGOs and allotment and community garden representatives. It's a chance for people to meet, share ideas, get to know each other, and find out what's going on around the country.
Outdoor Wellbeing Network gathering
The Outdoor Well-being Network is a collaboration of projects and organisations working on Social Farming and Horticulture projects in NI and the Border regions. They have been working together to promote and represent their work to commissioners and the wider public. The group has been meeting informally over the past nine months to develop their ideas and would now like open up the discussion. So far they have:
• Researched case studies of similar networks formed elsewhere in the UK
• Carried out a consultation with 10 local projects on their needs and concerns
• Received training on good government relations and how to deliver effective campaigns
Investigated further funding for the network
• Enlisted the help of Collaboration NI, who have offered to help with further focusing our group.
The network held a consultation event in December 2013 at the Camphill Community, Glencraig, near Holywood in County Down, which was open to anyone interested in contributing to the development of the network. A further consultation event took place in the same month with Social Farmers in Donegal. There are plans for a national awareness day to highlight the unique benefits of social farming and social and therapeutic horticulture.
For further information about the network contact:
Join The Ireland and Northern Ireland Community Garden Network Online
The Community Garden Network site at www.communitygardeningnetwork.ning.com is an online hub for community gardeners, providing support and promotion, sharing resources and learning, and exchanging ideas. Partner organisations of the Network, in addition to FCFCG, are:
- Healthy Food for All
- GIY Ireland
- Dublin Community Growers
- Transition Ireland & Northern Ireland
- The Organic Centre
Northern Ireland Workplace Allotments Project launched
A unique workplace allotment project for civil service staff working at Northern Ireland’s Stormont estate was launched in 2012, with the help of the Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens. The Allotment project is aimed at providing staff based at Stormont (the base for the Northern Ireland Assembly) with the opportunity to participate in a healthy, outdoor, recreational activity during their own time. 25 individual plots and one community garden training plot have been created and will be used year round to grow fresh fruit and vegetables. Go here for the full news story.
Northern Ireland Partners
Northern Ireland Environment Link (NIEL) is the forum and networking body for organisations interested in the environment of Northern Ireland. It assists members to develop views on issues affecting the environment and to influence policy and practice impacting on the natural and built environment of Northern Ireland.
NIEL's vision is to have a well protected and enhanced natural and built environment that is valued and cared for by people in Northern Ireland.
FCFCG and NIEL work as partners to support the growth of the community farming and gardening movement in Northern Ireland. For more information about NIEL, go to their website at: www.nienvironmentlink.org
Northern Ireland Publications
A map and directory aimed at helping people connect with real food and community green spaces in Northern Ireland was created by FCFCG and Northern Ireland Environment Link. Called Growing for Life in Northern Ireland, the directory includes details of farmers markets and farm shops; organic box schemes, community gardens and allotments, city farms and other specalised contacts.
You can download a PDF version by using the following link (but please note this is not a recent document and some details may be dated):
Northern Ireland Contacts
Miriam Turley, Northern Ireland Development Coordinator
Austin Herron, Voluntary Convenor
Tel: 0289 336 1002