The Wythenshawe Growing Programme April 2016

We were asked to manage and deliver an exciting education package in Wythenshawe Park in South Manchester. The Wythenshawe Growing Programme was funded through Clean City Funding from Manchester City Council. Through the delivery of inspiring workshops and training sessions, people would have the opportunity to learn new skills and approaches to growing and cooking their own food. The project was designed to be inclusive and the sessions were offered at no cost to all sections of the population. 5 local schools and 4 different local community groups accessed the programme and over 1,200 people attending the sessions. One Green World delivered a complete package of management including advertising, bookings and package design. A full evaluation was provided with quantitative and qualitative data. There were 3 providers including One Green World and we were the main contact for all communication and arrangements. Two packages were available, one aimed at schools with the National Curriculum Key stages 1,2 and 3 aligned to the programme and one aimed at adults with a skills matrix available. Both programmes offered The John Muir Award if all 5 sessions were attended. The package contained a lesson plan for each session. Each session attendee was asked to complete a feedback form.

Summary of the most beneficial aspect of the session:
• Being outdoors and interacting with the animals. Close contact with and feeding the animals.
• Seeing all the children enjoy the activities and find them exciting. The sessions were particularly special for those children who find some of the more formal aspects of learning in the classroom difficult.
• Providing children with the opportunity to work with adults other than their teachers and take part in a whole variety of activities related to outdoor learning.
• The Leaf Factory – learning about the inside of a leaf.
• To see the pupils learn about the plants and the way they worked together with other groups and staff.
• Good knowledge and information on planting.
• Team building, learning how to plant, how to put soil in pots, learning what plants need to grow and how to water plants.
• Interaction between different pupils and across different classes, giving pupils clear goals and allowing them to take part in an activity that gives them responsibility and lets them care for an area of the school, being outside and trusted to use equipment with clear rules about how they should be handled.
• The importance of growing food.
• The session was fantastic for confidence building, one volunteer had never even peeled a potato. We used all the vegetables the team had grown to cook with and this gave the team great satisfaction. Everyone went home with a smile on their face.
• I had such a great time with my daughter and seeing her join in and learn so much from planting and learning how to grow courgettes, onions, beetroots and she loved the greenhouses.
• I never thought I would learn so much and how easy it is to grow your own fruit and veg from literally nothing, a small plot, a wellington boot etc. it was so interesting and fun.

“Hi guys
Thanks for all you time, energy and enthusiasm this year, our families have loved their weekly trips to the park. I hope you receive more funding to carry on your amazing work and as always anything happening that we can support you and get involved in please let me know. Kind regards”
Debbie Hamnett – Early Years Outreach Worker, Brooklands Childrens Centre.

“Hello Sarah and Ian,
We would like to thank you for what has been an excellent programme for our children. They have loved every minute of working with you. We will get some pictures onto twitter to share with you of the work you did with us as well as the up and coming sessions including the trip.
Please think of us again next year if the funding is available as this is something we would love to engage in for the years to come. Thanks again”
Emma Foley (Year 5 teacher) and all of the Y5 pupils at The Willows.

“Dear Ian, Sarah and Richard,
I just wanted to say today went brilliantly. The children absolutely loved the fire lighting and the wild food! Everything was extremely well organised and Tim, Darren and David are great with the children.
Thanks so much for giving us this opportunity to take part in such a super project”
Sally Crampton – Green Team organizer, The Willows Primary School.