This week, Community Gardens Ireland welcomed the commitment by Minister Peter Burke and Minister Malcolm Noonan for a new policy to help local authorities provide more allotments and community gardens in Ireland. County of Wicklow is one of just 8 local authorities who don’t currently support any community gardens in their district.
Representatives from Community Gardens Ireland Dónal McCormack and Maeve Foreman met with the two ministers on Wednesday 28th September and they explained the need for better support at a government level.
Urban agriculture initiatives such as community gardening are highlighted by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change as assisting with reducing greenhouse gases, improving urban food security, improving biodiversity and adapting to climate change impacts. Community gardens and allotments also offer a cost-effective, accessible solution to improve health, strengthen community ties, and build a more resilient nation.
Chairperson of Community Gardens Ireland, Dónal McCormack said: “This agreement for a new policy on allotments and community gardens is welcomed by community growers throughout Ireland. There are currently fewer allotments & community gardens in Ireland then 100 years ago.
This policy will help communities and local authorities carry out climate actions such as local food growing and ultimately help local biodiversity.”
Maeve Foreman, Committee Member of Community Gardens Ireland and Secretary of Mud Island Community Garden said: “Support for this has been evident with hundreds of people around Ireland making submissions to their local TDs asking them to make changes. There is evidence of support for our initiative throughout all political circles.
We look forward to working with both Ministers and their department on the policy in the coming weeks.”