The Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens, with support from the Incredible Edible, has been awarded more than £800,000 from the Big Lottery Fund for its Growing Together project.
The project, brought together via a new UK partnership of organisations will promote the widespread uptake of innovative community enterprise.
It will also focus on business and technical up-skilling and alternative funding approaches, such as community shares, digital income generation, supporting and inspiring a cultural shift within the community growing sector.
It will offer tailored support to provide community growing initiatives with the confidence, skills and knowledge they need to move from passive reliance on grants to a dynamic and balanced income model.
The project will provide support materials, training, networking opportunities, peer-to-peer learning and tailored support to promote new ways of raising project and operational funding, through social enterprise, crowdfunding, community share issues, commercial sponsorship, philanthropy and other innovative methods not currently prevalent in the sector.
Incredible Edible’s Co-Founder Pam Warhurst collaborated on the bid and will work with the other partners to coordinate the future delivery of the grant.
Jeremy Iles, CEO of the Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens, and (Acting) Chair of Growing Together said: “We are delighted that the Growing Together partnership has been awarded this funding.
With the grant we will help community growing groups across the UK develop and diversify their incomes through community finance and social enterprise, which will in turn help secure the huge range of benefits they bring to their local communities.
“We want more people and communities to get Growing Together and this will help them do just that”.