Botanic Gardens Trust, Sydney, Australia

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Youth Community Greening

Helping youth to plant seeds for a greener future

Youth Community Greening is an environmental education program targeting disadvantaged urban and regional youth, generously sponsored by the Eden Foundation.

The program provides valuable experiences and learning opportunities for young people through garden projects.
Gardening gives pleasure. It nurtures the soul, calms the spirit, brings people together for a common cause and is a source of learning, creativity and health.

What we do

Youth Community Greening is a Horticultural outreach program which assists disadvantaged  preschools, schools, migrant youth groups, Youth off  the Streets, Juvenile Detention Centres, and other similar targeted groups of young people through helping create productive school and community gardens and green landscapes. The program also delivers syllabus-linked environmental classroom and outdoor activities at schools and centres across NSW.

Why target youth?

Children (0-14 year olds) and young people (15-24 year olds) face many challenges for the future, including finding their identity in an uncertain and changing world. They experience peer group pressure and have to deal with social, employment and financial issues.

Young people are readily influenced by their environment and their personal development is shaped by their experiences with family, friends, school and community. They are also affected by their surroundings - the built and natural environment. Many young people today are growing up with few opportunities to connect with nature.

Outcomes

The Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust has a commitment to inspire the appreciation and conservation of plants and the environment. The experienced specialist horticultural educators of Youth Community Greening help young people discover the rewards of gardening, build social cohesion and gain a sense of achievement, becoming more optimistic about the future in the process. It may even contribute to the next generation of innovators in the sustainability and environmental sectors.

Building on a successful model: read more

Youth Community Greening is the offspring of Community Greening - an educational partnership between the Trust and NSW Department of Housing. Since August 2000 Community Greening has developed over 200 community gardening projects in public housing estates or on unused public land and has provided over 30,000 face-to-face encounters for training, learning and special events. Over 100 school gardens and school gardening clubs have also been established.

Support the Sustainable Schools Program

The NSW Department of Education and Communities encourages schools to maintain sustainable school environments and to encourage students to model this behaviour in the community. Youth Community Greening takes this one step further by assisting those communities with the greatest need in both urban and regional NSW. The school curriculum will come alive for disadvantaged youth and empower them to change their world. Sustainability and Aboriginal Education are two of the key focus areas of the new National Curriculum and the Youth Community Greening program gives schools an opportunity to embrace these two focus areas.

Further develop YCG in regional areas

As far back as 1982 the Trust provided on-site environmental education, horticultural advice and practical assistance to schools and communities in the western area of NSW. Quarterly regional visits bring the Trustís horticultural education skills to the bush.

Our goals - the Youth Community Greening program will:

  • assist the most needy young people in society
  • build self-esteem and resilience
  • create opportunities for young people to connect with nature
  • increase youth ownership of public spaces
  • develop gardening skills and enhance employment opportunities
  • green the urban environment and promote sustainable lifestyles
  • educate young people about healthy choices

For more information contact YCG Education Officers on 9231 8333

 

 

 

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Youth Community Greening is only possible with your support.

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Youth Community Greening is only possible with your support

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