Edited on 02/05/2022

The city of Carlow has introduced a great initiative: mentoring to support the development of community gardens across the County. Ms Dee Sewell from Greenside Up will collaborate in the RU:RBAN project providing mentoring service based on two levels: firstly individuals who are involved in community gardens at all levels will have a one-to-one session to discuss concerns, opportunities, challenges and obstacles in their involvement in development of their community garden; these sessions will then be complemented by a group report for their community garden which will guide and advise on opportunities for growth.

Dee Sewell is a community-based entrepreneur based on the Carlow/Kilkenny border in Southeast Ireland. Ms Sewell created Greenside Up in 2009 to help the growth of individuals’ ethos and raise environmental awareness. With ten years of experience behind her, Ms Sewell has worked with a wide range of social, community and therapeutic projects in Ireland. Through Greenside Up Ms Sewell helps people to garden following organic principles, to consider biodiversity and food waste, and to live more correct lifestyles with an emphasis on social, community and therapeutic gardening.

Speaking about the project, Ms Sewell said “I am delighted to be appointed to work on this EU Project and I’m looking forward to working with the individuals and groups on the ground in County Carlow in order to support their development journey. This is a great opportunity for individuals involved in the Community Garden movement in County Carlow to have a sounding Board and advice on how their involvement in their own project can make a difference”.

Councillor Fintan Phelan welcoming this initiative said “I’m delighted that the Ru:Rban project can offer this practical support to our communities in the form of mentoring as part of their transfer roadmap process and I’d encourage anybody involved in the community garden movement in County Carlow to sign up to this mentoring. As a local authority the Ru:Rban project is an interesting journey which will see many benefits into the future, and I look forward to seeing the results of this project”.

Speaking about the benefits of mentoring, Melissa Doyle, EU Project Officer with the Local Enterprise Office of Carlow said “Being mentored is one of the most valuable and effective development opportunities you can offer anybody. Having the guidance, encouragement and support of a trusted and experienced mentor can provide a mentee with a broad range of personal and professional benefits, which ultimately lead to improved performance and productivity of our community gardens”.

A great initiative indeed for the community of gardeners in Carlow which will certainly encourage those who are thinking of becoming gardeners to make the final step in this direction!

Submitted by Patricia Hernandez on 02/05/2022
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Patricia Hernandez

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