Creating Gardens With Refugees

A regular part of our work at Good Life Permaculture is based around community development and social permaculture principles. We’ve found that when you work with people to improve knowledge, skill, health and wellbeing, other problems are also solved or lessened; and this can ripple into the community and the world beyond. You get the idea: from little things, big things grow.

Live and Learn is an adult education program initiated by Sustainable Living Tasmania (SLT), which focuses on providing practical skills in living sustainably, to decrease the cost of living and increase the quality of life. The course usually runs over six weeks, covering a different topic each week including: gardening; transport; water; waste; health and wellbeing; and building and energy.

In early 2014, SLT partnered with The Phoenix Centre (part of the Migrant Resource Centre) to offer a tailored Live and Learn program to some in the local refugee community. The course was based on producing food in a cold climate – refugees from hot countries were baffled by the Tasmanian weather. Good Life Permaculture was engaged to deliver the program, which we loved doing. Here are some of our reflections about why we support ‘social permaculture’ projects.

We designed the project so that we didn’t have any time inside lecturing people.