Funded by Climate Action Leeds & hosted at Left Bank Leeds, the workshop had 20+ community members attending, including members of Climate Action Leeds Community Hubs and others interested in community food growing.
Feed Leeds faciliated discussions about Little Veg Libraries (LVL), how to set up & maintain a library, their benefits and how to overcome common challenges. Multiple existing LVL coordinators shared their experiences and while other were able to ask questions on setting up a LVL for their own community.
Attendees took part in a ‘Take Action’ group discussion that resulted in 20+ new pledges, including:
“A pop-up veg library outside our allotment. Plan to share seeds, pots, seedlings, excess veg, printed recipes”
“To buy/cook seasonally + support local food waste organisations/teams”
“Look out for local groups involved in growing veg to join up and contribute”
A variety of practical activities followed, facilitated by Season Well,followed to empower more people to grow their own food at home. These activities ranged from planting salad seeds in a punnet, making paper planters for bean seeds, pricking out tomatoes and making LVL signs.
This workshop is part of FoodWise Leeds’ #eyesonsilver campaign, as they work towards their Sustainable Food Places silver award later in 2023. The evening combined the promotion of LVLs with sustainable food growing to help improve access to fresh, local and sustainable food, empower communities to take climate action through increasing skills to grow food and overall continue to build the good food movement in Leeds.
Take action today by making your pledge on the FoodWise Leeds website and join our #goodfoodmovement.
More about Little Veg Libraries
There are already a number of Little Veg Libraries existing in Leeds (in Guiseley, Garforth, Headingly, Hyde Park, Seacroft, Woodhouse, Chapel Allerton, Leeds University and Morley) with some linked to Climate Action Hubs. These are accessible structures in public places where people who are already growing their own food can share excess seeds, seedlings, surplus produce, books, tools etc. with people who are new to food growing. They are usually looked after by volunteers from a community organisation.
A big thank you to everyone who attended, to FoodWise partners Feed Leeds and Season Well. Thank you our funders Climate Action Leeds.
More about workshop partners:
FoodWise Leeds is the food partnership for the city, working towards creating a healthy, sustainable and fair food system for everyone in Leeds.
FoodWise Leeds is celebrating the success of delivering a 1-year community composting pilot, in partnership with local grass-roots organisations and community groups. Compost Collective Leeds is now expanding across the city, with funding to establish six additional sites.
Since February 2022, FoodWise Leeds has partnered with grass-roots organisations and community groups to establish two community composting sites in Garforth and Seacroft. The ambitions for these sites were to enable community members to:
Reduce food waste by recycling food scraps
Create a free source of compost to grow local food, flowers and other plants
Collectively #compostforclimate and reduce their carbon footprint
Support their local green and growing spaces
In just 3 months, over 180 5litre caddies were emptied into community composting bins, transforming over 250 kilos of diverted food waste into a future free source of compost. This means approximately 950 kilos of CO2 emissions (GhGs)1 have been saved; the equivalent weight of around 4 local alpacas at Leeds’ Meanwood Valley Urban Farm!
Once the compost is ready, local members will be collecting their share and any remaining will be given to local green/growing spaces (e.g. Incredible Edible Garforth community food growing beds and Seacroft Forest Garden).
Local Councillor Katie Dye enthuses about her local site Compost Collective Seacroft:
“The scheme has been really successful. From experienced composters to complete beginners, the pilot has engaged lots of different people who are now turning food waste into compost to grow more food!
FoodWise Leeds were able to provide the guidance needed to set up and establish the site for long-term sustainability, with expertise and resources from bin design to delivering members training. Climate Action Seacroft has been a great support, co-facilitating training, looking after the compost bin and encouraging people along the way. Links have been made with community organisations such as the LS14 Trust who are offering a free tea or coffee with each caddy emptied and Chapel FM who are composting food waste from their cafe.
It would be fantastic to see community composting extended so that more people can benefit, and we can cut waste across the city.”
FoodWise Leeds has shared an overview of their approach to setting up the pilot sites (below). Key to the continuing success of these sites is the co-production with local community. This has been achieved this through strong partnership working, community consultation and local skill sharing/development. One key outcome of this approach has been the positive impact on helping to reduce social isolation (i.e. community composting as a social activity), one member told us “I’m already a keen composter, I came to meet people”.
To achieve the ambitions for each site, FoodWise and partners worked through the following stages, developing supporting resources and tools. For example, Compost Collective Leeds Members Handbook (viewable here).
GROWING THE MOVEMENT
With strong links to the Leeds Food Strategy, the vision for Compost Collective Leeds is to work in partnership with local communities to grow a network of community compost sites across Leeds. Taking action towards this and based on the success of the pilot, FoodWise has secured funding to develop an additional six sites in partnership with other Leeds-based communities.
Compost Collective Leeds sites provide communities with a tangible way to take action in caring for themselves, their communities and the planet.
INTERESTED IN SETTING UP A SITE?
If you are a local organisation, community group or community member interested in setting up a local Compost Collective Leeds site, please get in touch with FoodWise Leeds (firstname.lastname@example.org) to discuss how we might support you and your community.
In collaboration with key partners, the Healthy Holidays Plus programme supports Leeds providers to embed healthy eating messages and activities across all future Healthy Holidays provision. This toolkit release follows the previous successful iterations across key 2022 holiday periods. All releases have been coproduced with a range of collaborators including local third sector organisations, schools, community hubs, key food providers, Leeds City Council and Leeds Community Foundation. Healthy Holidays Leeds has been running since 2018, providing nutritious food and engaging activities to primary and secondary school aged children and young people in receipt of free school meals and children and young people who have Special Education Needs or Disabilities.
For more details about the Healthy Holidays Leeds programme, click here.
FoodWise Leeds has launched the #GoodFoodStories campaign to celebrate the vibrant food scene across Leeds and to inspire others to join our local #goodfoodmovement!
The first series of #GoodFoodStories is a collection of short interviews with pioneers of the Leeds #goodfoodmovement. Eight videos give a taste of Leeds’ ever-growing community of sustainable, healthy and accessible food projects and organisations.
The #GoodFoodStories map can also be used to journey around the diverse neighbourhoods of Leeds. The map has been created to help people see what these places have to offer and get involved in their local community. Whether they want to eat more sustainably, grow their own food, reduce their waste or access community food, this map captures some of the brilliant examples of the Leeds #goodfoodmovement.
#GoodFoodStories will be promoted on the FoodWise Leeds social media platforms over the coming months, spotlighting each interview (Twitter, Instagram or Facebook).
We are looking to expand this campaign later in 2023! If you know of any #GoodFoodStories across Leeds ready to be captured, please get in touch via email@example.com.
Watch these digital stories to be inspired and learn about what actions you can take to make a difference.
In collaboration with key partners, the programme supports Leeds providers to embed healthy eating messages and activities across all future Healthy Holidays provision.
This toolkit release follows the previous successful iterations for Easter & summer provisions this year.
All releases have been coproduced with a range of collaborators including local third sector organisations, schools, community hubs, key food providers, Leeds City Council and Leeds Community Foundation.
Healthy Holidays Leeds has been running since 2018, providing nutritious food and engaging activities to primary and secondary aged children who are eligible for free school meals.
It builds on previous work and resources to support individuals and community groups to access and try simple, nutritious and affordable recipes. Within this online peer-to-peer learning space, photographs, quotes and other information are all included to help share real stories about real food
We have provided the information to helpbuild understanding and to support further conversations around the sustainability and carbon impact of the food we eat.
By making small changes to what we eat, while maintaining a nutritious and balanced diet, we can make big differences to our individual carbon footprint. For example, by choosing seasonal and/or locally grown veg and fruit where possible.
Check outBDA’s simple tips for a sustainable and balanced diet here.
To find out more about the Carbon Footprint Calculator, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
From here, we plan to continue growing the diversity of recipes and promoting it within local communities and programmes across Leeds. To #SearchTryShare recipes, check out the Leeds Recipe Hub here.
“This is a fantastic resource for community groups and individuals to be able to search, try and share nutritious, affordable and tasty recipes, with a focus on seasonal eating. Each recipes carbon footprint will help people make informed decisions about what they eat and help protect the planet.”
Sonja Woodcock, Sustainable Food Places Coordinator at FoodWise Leeds.
Leeds Recipe Hub Partners:
Leeds Recipe Hub has been funded by Leeds City Council.
Compost Collective Leeds (CCL) will be We Are Seacroft’s Family Fun Day (with an eco twist!), outside the LS14 Trust Café on Friday 12th August, 12-2pm.
CCL and Climate Action Seacroft members will be there talking about the importance of reducing food waste, how composting can help and a proposed community composting project for local residents.
If you’re interested to learn more or get involved with community composting in Seacroft, please do drop by the community composting stall 12-2pm on Saturday 12th August.
The wider event will also have a variety of different stalls from forest school crafts to bike repairs & maintenance, with many different activities for the whole family.
Compost Collective Leeds supports communities to reduce food waste by recycling food scraps, make #soilfromscraps for growing local food + flowers and collectively #compostforclimate. CCL are working in partnership with We Are Seacroft to deliver the proposed Compost Collective Seacroft project.
Follow @FoodWiseLeeds on Twitter for more on Compost Collective Leeds.
FoodWise Leeds has released a new Healthy Eating Toolkit for the summer Healthy Holidays programme to support providers across Leeds – and beyond!
This follows a successful ‘Healthy Holidays Spring Toolkit’ for Easter provision earlier this year. Different approaches were piloted for supporting providers to embed healthy eating messages and activities into their provision.
This latest version of the toolkit includes:
Quick food conversation starters with children and young people.
How to integrate healthy eating messages and activities into daily provision.
Ways toprovide healthy eating information/activities to family members and carers.
Summer Competition! 50 vouchers to be won by Leeds Healthy Holidays children and young people.
Examples from 8 different Leeds providers, across third sector organisations, local schools and council community hubs, celebrating their own healthy eating activities.
The toolkit has been circulated digitally to providers across Leeds and is accessible to others via the FoodWise website.
Follow us on Twitter to see quick tips from the toolkit and provider spotlights!
“It was so helpful to have the toolkit to hand over Easter, there are so many ideas in there. We were able to take inspiration and make the activities suit our own provision and families. It also helped us to upskill our staff members with the advice on relevant healthy eating training.”
A local Healthy Holidays Provider
FoodWise Leeds has been running the Healthy Holidays Plus programme since October 2021. In collaboration with key partners, the programme supports Leeds providers to embed healthy eating messages and activities across all future Healthy Holidays provision. Healthy Holidays Leeds has been running since 2018, providing nutritious food and engaging activities to primary and secondary aged children who are eligible for free school meals.
We are delighted that Leeds was runner up for the Veg Cities prize at the recent The Food Foundation‘s Peas Please conference!
Peas Please is a national campaign to increase vegetable consumption, with a particular focus on low income groups and children. Leeds was recognized for FoodWise’s Veg Cities campaign, which aims to embed increasing vegetable consumption into a variety of projects, including Healthy Holidays, reaching out to diverse audiences and for our success in securing 43 pledges from 28 participants to serve more vegetables!
We’d like to highlight the success of our #JustOneMore campaign to encourage an extra portion of vegetables across a variety of settings. And the Feed Leeds campaign #sowarowXtra to encourage those with the skills to grow food to share seedlings and expertise with others. Together we can create a more veggie-friendly city!
Thank you to all the organizations that have pledged so far and we hope that next year we’ll win the top prize!