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The New Growth Project

 

New Course Starting in Spring 2013 - Application Forms will be available now!

"Our mission is to provide free education and training for unemployed and disadvantaged people, services to people in our community, raise awareness of the environment and bring people together socially through gardening and promote healthy, active lifestyles." 

The New Growth Project is a charity project that we have started to provide free horticultural training to unemployed people. The first course took place in our garden in Co. Mayo in March 2012 and we followed that with two more throughout the year. Our first course had 4 participants but now we have improved facilities so this year we will be offering 6 places on the course.

There are no course fees and apart from a small grant from mayo County Council the course does not receive any government funding. We are going to grow this project to provide training to more people and offer more courses.

At the end of 2012 we have installed a new classroom and W.C. facilities. Plans for the coming year are to develop income generating enterprises that benefit locals in the community and provide employment including; plant sales, a range of jams and preserves and gardening services.

We will also be organising a number of garden social days throughout the year.

Any profits made from The Garden School will go to The New Growth Project. If you want to support our project you can do so by enrolling on a course, book a one day course in our garden, we can come to your garden to deliver a course, you can buy a T-Shirt

The Next Growth Project

Horticultural training

The New Growth Project is a twelve-week part-time horticultural training course. The aim is to provide horticultural training and education to individuals who have a desire to make the first step towards a horticultural profession. Participants in the course have the chance to work alongside and learn from Ciarán Burke a well known qualified horticulturist, garden writer and lecturer. There are no course fees. There are six places on the course.

Our Inspiration

People are our inspiration. Everybody has a story, every person has the potential to do something good, something great. Through our courses we help others to learn new skills, provide a situation where people can interact with others, and feel good about themselves and life in general.

People need hope, encouragement and some help. Horticulture is an area of great potential in Ireland, and in the west of Ireland there is huge scope for building horticultural enterprise, both in ornamental sector and food production. The New Growth Project is our small way that we hope to help some people to help themselves.

Location

The course takes place in a private garden situated close to Charlestown, Co. Mayo. The garden was started about six years ago. In the garden there are a number of different plant habitats and types including meadow, stone scree, dry border, woodland and wetland areas. There are establishing trees, shrubs and herbaceous perennials. There are also vegetable and fruit sections and polytunnels.

Times and Duration

The training is held on two days each week, for four hours each day, 10.00 am to 2 pm. The next course will start in March 2013.

Eligibility

Anyone over the age of 18 and not currently in employment, not taking part in a training programme or in education is entitled to apply. No experience in horticulture is required and no knowledge of gardening is expected.

Successful applicants must show an interest in gardening/nature and be willing to work in an outdoor environment including enduring a little rain. Participants will need to have their own transport.

The past courses have had more applications than places. We picked the applicants by lottery and this is what we will continue to do. If you have applied fora previous course you can apply again.

Course Contents

The syllabus and course content is based on Royal Horticultural Society Level 1 Award in Practical Horticulture Through the practical work, instruction and homework participants on the course will learn a number of skills and gain horticultural knowledge over a number of subjects. There will be an opportunity to prepare for and sit one unit of Royal Horticultural Society Level 2 examinations. Participants will gain a basic understanding of the following:

The qualification consists of 6 units covering the following subject areas:

Core

  • Preparing soil for sowing and planting (1 credit)
  • Soil testing (1 credit)
  • Assist with the propagation of plants from seed (2 credits)
  • Assist with the vegetative propagation of plants (3 credits)
  • Assist with planting and establishing plants (3 credits)
  • Identification of a range of common garden plants, weeds pests and diseases (1 credit)

Entry Requirements

There are no pre-requisites for entry to this qualification.

Assessment

Assessment is by means of a range of practical activities and short written assignments.

In addition participants will also learn:

  • Propagate and grow new plants from seeds and cuttings
  • Understand how plants grow and their requirements for healthy growth
  • Grow vegetables and fruit for home use.
  • Select, places and plant ornamental plants in borders and in the garden
  • Weed control
  • Pruning
  • Garden layout
  • Environmental impacts of horticulture and sustainability issues
  • Organic methods of treating plant problems

Assessment

Participants on the course will be required to keep a work diary. Each week there will also be a short written assessment to be completed for homework.

Throughout the course each participant will also complete a number of practical assessments.

At the end of the course there will be the chance to sit one unit of the Royal Horticultural Society's Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Horticulture examinations. This is not compulsory but it may be the first step to gaining an internationally recognaised qualification in horticulture.

The tutor will assess all course work throughout the duration of the twelve weeks. At the end of the course all work will be verified by an external assessor. A certificate will be issued to everyone who participates fully on the course and completes course work to an acceptable standard.

Course Tutor

Ciarán Burke will be the course tutor. Ciaran is a qualified horticulturist with over twenty years experience including horticultural food production, garden retailing, garden design and horticultural training and education. Ciarán is a well known horticulturist who writes for a number of publications including the Irish Garden magazine and lectures to garden clubs and horticultural societies. He possesses a great plant knowledge and is enthusiastic about growing edible crops and ornamental gardening. Through his work with The Garden School he shares his love for his subject by preparing people for their Royal Horticultural Society examinations.

Applying for the Course

An application form is available from here.

Applicants must also send an up to date C.V.

A completed application form and C.V. must be returned to the address below no later than 28th February 2013.

Final selection may require candidates to be available for a telephone interview.

There are no course fees.

Course Value- €1050.00

Cost of Course for Successful applicants - ZERO

Successful applicants must be prepared to work outdoors and as such have suitable footwear and clothing (e.g. wellington boots, rain proof jacket, gardening gloves etc.). Participants on the course must be able to work with others as part of a team and be able to take instruction. Successful applications will be expected to be on time each day and full attendance of the course is expected. Failure to complete the course will result in individual being liable for course fees.

Application forms and C.V. should be posted to the address below to arrive NO LATER than 28th February 2013.

The New Growth Project

The Garden School
Kilmovee
Ballaghadereen
Co. Roscommon

Application Form (word)

Application Form.pdf

Our Vision For The New Growth Project

Education -Enterprise - Community

Our mission is to provide free education and training for unemployed and disadvantaged people, gardening services to people in our community, raise awareness of the environment and bring people together socially through gardening and promote healthy active lifestyles.

By running courses we can continue to educate and train. Setting up a sustainable enterprise based on a Co-Op model where everyone has equal share will enable us to create employment, provide an income stream to continue providing courses and support local community projects. We plan on establishing a company of limited guarantee and attain registered charity status.

More New Growth

We want The New Growth Project to grow, so that we can provide more training for more people, provide service to people in our community, raise awareness of the environment and bring people together socially through gardening and promote healthy active lifestyles.

Volunteering

Garden Volunteers

We have a number of opportunities for volunteers. You can volunteer to help in the garden for a few hours each week and learn about gardening.

Administration Volunteers

We are also looking for someone to help with administration and drawing up a business plan to help bring The New Growth Project to the next stage of development and make a greater difference to the world.

Our Vision For The New Growth Project

We want to establish a company of limited guarantee and attain registered charity status. By running courses we can continue to educate and train. Setting up a sustainable enterprise based on a Co-Op model where everyone has equal share it will enable us to create employment and provide an income stream and invest and support local community projects.

Source: The Garden School - The New Growth Project