According to the ‘Polska wieś 2020′ report the attractiveness of countryside as the place of residence is growing. Especially suburban villages are changing at a very fast pace. Shopping malls and numerous houses and apartments are being built there. In our home Olsztyński district (Warmińsko-Mazurskie province) we can observe tensions between migrants and natives. Sometimes newcomers wish to change the space to make it more urban which is not always approved of by locals. Moreover, diagnoses caried out in these communes show that people living there expect better environmental education.
We will address these two challenges by starting in the Gietrzwałd, Stawiguda and Purda communes 10 social gardens with the use of permaculture – apart from pro-environmental aspect, they will also serve as a place of integration for new and indigenous inhabitants. We will organise small festivals which will create an opportunity to get to know one another better. People who have been living there for years and those who have recently moved in will be invited to take part in workshops on social and permaculture gardens, edible plants and functioning of such gardens all over the world. We will organise exhibitions devoted to organic gardening and permaculture principles in our gardens.
Our first partner is the Urban Space and Road Maintenance Office, at the Department of Environment and Planning in Reykjavik, which we will pay a study visit to in order to learn how to properly run social gardens and how to engage inhabitants in this initiative. Other partners include the Gietrzwałd and Stawiguda communes as well as the Nowalijki’ Countryside Homemaker Club in Nowa Wieś providing us with land for gardens. Polish partners will also help us engage local communities.