The Friends group have taken advice from Disability Action Wyre Forest on access issues and have worked closely with DAWF to ensure equality of access to LEAP raised beds. This having been noted we are pleased that the access issues have now been addressed and everyone can enjoy the park from whichever direction they approach it from.
"During the last year the alcove gardens have been very productive with flowers, herbs and vegetables. The vegetable patch, next to the compost heap, produced a good crop of potatoes. Friends of St George's Park adopted 2 alcove gardens as part of their LEAP (Let's Eat the Park) project. All produce is 'pick your own' and is free to the general public. We plan to build on this success during 2016 - 2107." St George's Churchyard Gardeners Report 2015-2016
A number of developments have further lifted our spirits during the Winter period not least learning that our main funder The People's Health Trust have signed off our progress report and impact analysis thereby releasing a new tranche of funding for Let's Eat the Park.
Other actual and potential funders have contacted us recently with whom we are having a conversation about the next phase of LEAP as well as everyone whose feedback is reinvested in the evolving direction of the project. LEAP is now in its last semester of initial funding having established a variety of streams, some quite big some quite small, but all crucially important to maintaining sustainable development in the funded area.
The LEAP project basically takes electronic cash transfers and by a process of alchemy converts them into raspberries, runner beans, onions, the like of which we give away free to people visiting the park or living in the locality. It works well, all the signs tell us that the initiative is well regarded. The dad referred to earlier said at one point "you guys ought be rewarded for what you do" the reply was that the park is itself the reward - to see it looking good and serving lots of purposes for the community is reward enough. He has childcare responsibilities for five children he told us but wants to get involved as and when time allows, but speaking to us today, expressing his appreciation of how well the park is cared for means he is already involved. As are several new volunteers we have welcomed to work parties in the last couple of weeks. Even during the winter months the work parties have continued more or less every week for getting on for two years with a sustained degree of enthusiasm and a vision of new directions. Watch out for further news soon on our recent contact with the Royal Horticultural Society and our celebration of Kidderminster and District Youth Trust's 50th anniversary next week.