Team Volunteering at the Community Growing Project – Micklefield, High Wycombe

Grow It, Cook It, Eat It is a community growing initiative where local residents are encouraged to visit their local growing site and learn how to grow, maintain and harvest the crops.

The growing sites have been up and running since May 2021 and are based at Desborough Road Allotments and Micklefield Library in High Wycombe, Vineyard Food Bank in Aylesbury and Waterside Academy School in Chesham. 

The challenge 

The local community in Micklefield was really keen to participate in the Community Growing Project at Micklefield Library but felt overwhelmed by the amount of work needed to get the garden started. Community Impact Bucks became involved with the Grow It, Cook It, Eat project after applying to Buckinghamshire Council as Expert Gardeners.

The solution 

A team of 17 volunteers from Saepio, a local information security company based in High Wycombe, stepped in to help kick-start the project in August 2021. They had approached the Gardening Team at Community Impact Bucks about volunteering and chose to volunteer at Micklefield Library. The volunteers from Saepio helped to create a beautiful, accessible green space where Community Impact Bucks can support the community to grow, harvest and share edible produce.

Tasks included painting the fences around the patio area, cutting back bushes, weeding, preparing beds and troughs for planting, cleaning tables and chairs and more.

Community Impact Bucks coordinated the logistics of the day, organising and supporting the team of volunteers as well as providing all the equipment for the group to use. The volunteers from Saepio only had to bring gardening gloves and, with some elbow grease, had a great afternoon helping to support their local community while taking part in a great team building exercise.

Why did the team volunteer? 

Saepio is always looking at ways to give back – staff usually taking part in a sporting lead activity such as Tough Mudder to raise money for charity but the company was keen to try something new that could get more of the team involved and positively impact the community. The opportunity to help at the Community Growing Projects through Community Impact Bucks matched all requirements – as Andrew Pitt, Sales Director at Saepio commented: “It was really enjoyable! Everyone really got stuck in to working towards the common goal of beautifying the area.”

What did the team get out of volunteering?

A couple things: it was amazing to see colleagues again after a long time of working from home, and also the sense of accomplishment stepping back after our time there and looking back on the before and after photos. Community Impact Bucks had already done a superb job before we had got there and having us volunteer helped them get through the extra clearing and painting that was needed.

“Walking away from the day the team felt really positive knowing that the space we had worked on will be used for a community garden. The team definitely enjoyed it and would be up for doing it again.” – Andrew Pitt, Sales Director

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Published on October 14, 2021

Image courtesy of St Francis's Children Society