It was a wonderful first “presentation to a group” of Our Heart Gardens and good connections were made that will be the foundation of what is to come. Seeds have been sown in JUMP with Glenn Hilke and Barbara, TRU students will be sharing the website and the possibilities with their instructors and peers, and everybody knows to come to the website to learn more – because there really wasn’t enough time to give them a complete picture.
The first question from the floor revealed something I wasn’t aware of. I talk about Our Heart Gardens as if it already exists, because it supports the Gardens’ existence, but it doesn’t yet. So, as happens each time, I must adjust the presentation (shown below.) I got great comments and congratulations and will follow up on all the connections and suggestions I was offered.
I almost walked out the door before making those connections, though, and I learned the presentation isn’t over when the applause stops! That’s when I need to step up and direct the energy of the sparks made in the audience. Some like to confirm what they can to do to help, others need to communicate the ideas that were inspired. Some people just want to say they enjoyed the presentation and look forward to seeing me again! How nice is that!!
I gave them a business card and the “Downtown & Four Families” section of the website, and this is what I told them:
Thank you for the opportunity to speak to you all. I’m so impressed with the things you’ve accomplished and challenges you’ve met by working together. I have a challenge I’d like your help with…
OHG is a new kind of public facility where organic produce is grown indoors, not to replace but to augment the crops already grown in the fields. The KFPC Strategic Plan includes precisely what OHG is designed for – creating food security in close-knit communities, sharing and celebrating people while they work together to feed hungry people.
In exchange for people’s work we offer healthy meals, fresh produce and bus tickets – higher demand for transit allows improvement of services and security. A network linked by transit can highlight our diversity and enable circulation. It could become a first-of-its-kind-in-the-World tourist attraction! Vancouver, and other cities, are working on networks of community gardens but no-one has brought the labour indoors, compensates with bus tickets and uses drop-in participants!
The first Our Heart Gardens I think should be a 24/7/365 Primary facility as a sanctuary for the vulnerable and a good place to go for shift-workers, insomniacs and people in recovery.
While the City has set a Food Hub as a long term priority, in combination with OHG we have the opportunity to meet many other, on-going and short term goals including
- increasing the volume of year-round local foods,
- providing access to healthy local foods and
- ways for everybody to grow food – as well as
- facilities for food processing and community kitchens.
Interest and momentum can be created and maintained by providing a wide range of things for people to do in OHG. The handout provided discusses the effect Our Heart Gardens will have on the city and the people who live here, to help you get a feel for what a difference this facility can make to all our lives.
Albert Einstein said “Problems cannot be solved with the same mind set that created them.” ―
We have problems to solve and we have to work with the resources we have. The new mind-set we need must be created by nurturing and empowering people, and cooperation is key.
We have an opportunity to engage and honour First Nations people, to learn their philosophy, knowledge of the land and skills of storytelling, ceremony, ritual and respect. They use sharing circles as a way to include everyone. Each OHG will be managed by a council elected and informed by sharing circles so everyone can be fully heard with consideration and respect. Adoption of this First Nations practice supports individuals and the community, as well as fostering the new mind-set Einstein suggested is necessary.
I have an appointment with Venture Kamloops on April 10th and the website is up and the blog will have a story about talking to you.
What I need from you is your help in creating the first Our Heart Gardens. Being first, we will follow your many successes, like Communities in Bloom, by showing the World a way for all humanity to thrive here on Mother Earth.
Thank you for your time. After the meeting I’ll be here to answer any questions you may have.