Healthy Food For All, KASI Community Garden

Killarney, Co. Kerry

Killarney Asylum Seekers Initiative (KASI) is developing a community garden on the outskirts of Killarney town. The garden is part of the Demonstration Programme of Community Food Initiatives (CFIs) which is managed by Healthy Food for All and funded by safefood. The programme aims to identify supports needed for the development and long-term sustainability of CFIs. There is a large emphasis on sharing of learning and the lessons learnt will be used to influence policy development.

KASI Community Garden provides a ‘social space’ that helps facilitate interaction between the target groups and local communities in a holistic manner of working together, sharing and exchanging ideas, skills, food and culture. It facilitates volunteerism among asylum seekers in direct provision centres who are not allowed to work. The garden also provides space for migrant workers and their families (who often do not have access to a garden space) to grow their own crops. Training will be provided on organic gardening, nutrition, healthy eating habits and cooking on a budget.

Healthy Food for All has developed a Good Practice Guide for Community Food Initiatives which provides advice on how to set up community food projects that improve the consumption of healthy food amongst low-income groups. Examples of community food initiatives include food cooperatives; community cafés, food-growing projects; breakfast and after-school clubs; and community-based training courses in nutrition and healthy eating.

Also, Healthy Food for All is compiling a directory of Community Food Initiatives working with low-income groups across the island of Ireland. The aim of the directory is to provide a forum for CFIs to raise awareness about their project and food poverty, to share learning and to help inform policy.

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