Sustaining Change is a MERCi project to green Greater Manchester's voluntary sector. Kindling has been helping to develop the audit and training elements of the four year programme, and in January 2010 we piloted some of the training with MERCi staff, trying out creative and interactive activities to introduce the many elements of sustainability.
Kindling has started 2010 in its new office in Work for Change, Hulme, South Manchester, after working for the last two years from member's homes. Although we don't presently have funding to pay for the office, we felt it was crucial to involve more volunteers, become more inclusive and allow the project to grow.
We’ve attended a few orchard management courses over the last year (the latest one on the 11th December 2009, and run by Cheshire BTCV) to learn the basics of looking after apple trees & have a go at some winter pruning.
For further information visit the Orchard Management Course gallery where we provide information on the basic principles of pruning and give you a taste of the issues and techniques involved.
On Monday 27th April 2009 three of the country’s leading experts on sustainable food and agriculture spoke to a hundred and fifty people attending the Global Crisis : Organic Response debate, held in Manchester City Centre.
The event included a BBC style Question Time hosted by Patrick Holden CBE – Director of The Soil Association and presentations by Susanne Padel – Research Associate of Aberystwyth University and Lawrence Woodward OBE of Organic Research Centre Elm Farm.
Kindling's Chris Walsh gave a presentation to several hundred Manchester School of Architecture students on the issue of sustainable food in Manchester in mid-November 2009. As part of the students’ first year project they are exploring urban food production and consumption and the talk raised the many and interlinked problems with our present unsustainable food system and offered some potential solutions.
Click here to see the Sustainable Urban Food Production presentation.
Kindling hosted a visit from London food co-operative Organic Lea at the end of October 2009 as part of an information exchange.The eight members of Organic Lea have just taken on Hawkwood Nursery, a 12 acre site on the edge of Waltham Forest as a focus for urban food production and training.
The two days included visits to Hulme Community Garden Centre; Unicorn Grocery; Fairfield Materials Management; Glebelands City Growers and Unicorn's growing project: Moss Brooke.
One of our party nights in Hulme, this time proceeds went to help rebuild the Clinica La Guadalupana hospital in the Zapatista community of Oventik in Chiapas, Mexico, which was recently destroyed by fire.
On this occasion we raised over £400. Previous disco have raised nearly £400 for the El Salvadorean Permaculture Association and £450 for Peace Brigades International.
On Valentine’s Day 2009, Kindling launched its pocket-sized seasonal food calendar "The time is ripe", produced with the support of the Local Food Fund. The booklet and accompanying website aims to make the process of shopping for locally produced, seasonal fruit and vegetables easier. Alongside the seasonal food calendar are details of where to buy local, seasonal produce in Manchester as well as tips on selection and storage.
The Kindling Trust is working with staff and pupils of St. Margaret's Primary School and local residents to explore the heritage and history of food growing, cooking and selling in Whalley Range.
The children at St. Margaret's School have been interviewing older people with a particular interest or viewpoint of Whalley Range's food history, in preparation for creating a 2009 calendar.