IRCOM’s Newcomer Greening Initiative
IRCOM’s Newcomer Greening Initiative is a hugely popular program at IRCOM House. Beginning in the summer of 2007, under the guidance of Jim Beckta, the Greening Program began with a handful of growers utilizing the 1000 sq. feet of balcony space at IRCOM to grow vegetables and herbs from Canada and their home countries.
In its eighth year, the initiative has expanded from the IRCOM balconies to newcomers growing in a large number of backyards throughout the city. Working with Neighbourhood Immigrant Settlement Workers (NISW’s), Food Matters Manitoba, various community development organizations, and supportive individuals on an informal basis, Jim and others have enabled the graduates of IRCOM to continue growing their favourite vegetables, flowers and herbs.
At the same time, the newcomers have introduced their new neighbours to a number of greens which have sustained them in a nutritious diet in their home countries and will, over time, have a strong impact in the area of healthy food choices here in Manitoba.
If you would like to support the Greening Program (by donating soil, seeds, your backyard for use by a newcomer, equipment or your time) please contact the IRCOM Volunteer Program Coordinator, Erin Anderson, at email@example.com or call 943-8765 x. 23.