Green Connect: Nourishing The Community

On a steep and uneven hillside adjacent to Warrawong High School, south of Wollongong in NSW, a social enterprise called Green Connect is running a farm called Urban Grown. Green Connect combines permaculture ethics and design principles, with employment opportunities for resettled refugees and at-risk youth, to create an amazing model for urban sustainability; the farm produces as many social outcomes as chemical-free lettuces.

Green Connect and Urban Grown, originally two separate projects of the Port Kembla Community Project, merged in February 2014 when the funding for Urban Grown ceased. Green Connect staff committed to taking on the farm on a volunteer basis to see it through to financial sustainability.

Green Connect aims to: grow and distribute chemical-free food in the local area; reduce the amount of waste that goes to landfill; and turn organic waste into a productive resource. It also: creates green, socially useful jobs, especially for resettled refugees and young people; helps empower people to care for each other and the planet; and achieves social and environmental aims through trade.