Like Chiqui, Julie’s been volunteering at Growing Communities since April. With no experience, apart from growing herbs on her balcony, she totally enthuses about her Tuesdays spent with us. She’s a regular at our Farmers’ Market on Saturdays and comes to Allens Gardens because she wants to be involved in the practical side of the things that she has been interested in for a long time, agreeing with us that the local economy is vital.
What do you most like about volunteering here?
It’s really peaceful to be outside and getting the fresh air…I feel like I’m not in London. London can be an assault. I’m in a different head space here, which feels really healthy. It’s good to have contact with nature. I would like to be able to give more time than I do. And the jelly & ice-cream!*
What don’t you like?
That’s not come up yet. The work is quite hard, but I don’t mind that.
Tell me something that you’ve learned from working here
Well, it’s confirmed what I thought, that organic growing is not easy. I’ve been learning things bit by bit, taking in things slowly.
And what do you do in the rest of your time?
I’m developing a research project on public services, valuing care services against privatisation.
* This was a first-time treat today, with apprentice Ida making special vegan red-currant jelly from the berries left over from last week. We’re hoping it’s sparked a new tradition in super yummy puddings on a Tuesday…