Survey results show Capital Growth gardens as hubs of green skills, education and training
The 2022-2023 Capital Growth network survey of members has shown people of all ages are gaining valuable growing skills but more funding and opportunities are needed to expand the accessibility and inclusivity of food growing.
The Capital Growth network has registered over 4,200 food growing gardens since its launch in 2008, with just under 1000 of those active and engaging with the netowrk in 2023. This year’s member survey saw 102 respondents representing different tpes and scale of food growing projects across London.
The State of the network
These gardens are spaces for training and education with impressive reach; a reported 107,777 people regularly take part in their activities. From these responses, we can estimate that our full network employs over:
- 5,000 workers,
- over 6000 trainees and apprentices, and reaches
- over 47,000 school pupils.
These numbers showcase the enormous contribution the network makes to education and training in green skills, however, many gardens also shared concerns about a lack of funding highlighting the need for additional investment in green jobs and training.
The future role of the network
Respondents believe that Capital Growth continues to play an important role in:
- showing councils that community gardens are valuable and need to be better protected.
- supporting the Right to Grow campaign
- continuing to push for additional growing opportunities especially those that increase diversity and accessibility.
While gardens felt good progress is being made, nearly half of them feel that inclusion, diversity and representation remain big challenges for their project. They feel that supporting anti-racism in food growing and platforming food growing initiatives led by Black people and people of colour should be a priority for Capital Growth going forward.
Read A year in London’s food gardens: Capital Growth network survey findings 2022-2023 to dig into the data and feedback from the wider network.
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Capital Growth is a project of Sustain: the alliance for better food and farming.
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