Volunteering with Growing Communities in Hackney
If you are interested in organic growing and want to make a difference, come and join our regular volunteer work team. Volunteers are essential in helping us to grow food in the heart of the city.
****Please note: all our sites will be closed for volunteering on Monday 13 February and Tuesday 14 February, while our growers take a well-earned break! All sites will be open as usual from Monday 20 February.****
*** If you want to volunteer at our Dagenham Farm, please see separate page.***
Anyone who is interested in gardening and growing can volunteer - no previous experience is necessary! It's a great way of improving your growing skills and meeting other local people while making a real contribution to Growing Communities' aim of setting up practical, long-lasting alternatives to the current food system. Last year over 100 volunteers worked with us on the sites. The volunteers work with Growing Communities' growers to help produce Hackney Salad and other things at our market gardens in Hackney. The produce is sold through our organic fruit and vegetable bag scheme and through some shops and restaurants.
How to join the volunteer work team
If you are volunteering for the first time, please come along to the site on one of the volunteer days - speak to the grower and they will take you through a short health and safety talk and tell you where everything is (tools, toilets etc). Please tell us if you have any health problems or allergies and if there is anything in particular you would like to learn from your volunteering experience with us. We can then tailor work tasks to suit you. We will also get you to fill in a short form which we need to do so we can contact you about any changes to garden opening times. You are free to come any time during the day and stay for as long as you wish, but note that we have lunch about 1pm and that Tuesday afternoons are quite busy with all the harvesting going on, so not the best time to start volunteering.
Volunteering times are as follows
Mondays, 10am till 1pm at Clissold Park, 10am till 4pm at Allens Gardens
Tuesdays, 10am till 4pm at Springfield Park or Hackney Tree Nursery* or St Matthew's**
(*If you'd like to help out at the tree nursery, please contact Ximena before you visit on 07958 018567 as her hours vary. ** To help out at St Matthew's, please contact Michal before you visit on 07478 711511.)
We don't have any volunteer days in December or January as not much is growing.
We are not able to offer weekend volunteering.
How to find us
All the sites are on the map below. The Allens Gardens site is a little hidden! You'll find us through the gates between the flats on the very corner of Bethune Road and Manor Road. It might look like a private entrance but go through the gate and you'll find us at the bottom of the tarred road to the right. Our Springfield Park site is 100 metres to the North of the White Lodge (Spark Cafe). The Clissold Park site is next to the goat enclosure (look out for the polytunnel).
Below is a map of our sites. From left to right: Clissold Park, Allens Gardens, Springfield Park, St Matthew's Church and Hackney Tree Nursery.