Pictured is the Growery in Birr in full bloom during the summer last month
Three finalists, including the Growery in Birr GIY group in Offaly, have been selected for the top prize for the 2019 GIY and Energia Get Ireland Growing Fund and they are looking for your vote in a bid to secure a generous €5,000 grant for their project.
The other two finalists are the Zero Waste Community Garden in Kildare and the Breffni Men's Gardening and Social Club in Leitrim. All three finalists joined the RTE Today Show for a live appearance on Tuesday, February 19 last to share details of their project and these community projects are now up for a public vote.
The voting began on Tuesday, February 19 last and will run until February 28 with members of the public being able to cast their vote on www.giy.ie. The winner will be announced at the awards night on March 19 at the home of GIY in Waterford City, GROW HQ.
The Growery in Birr in County Offaly is a social third space in the context of food health sustainability regeneration and well-being. They run a variety of partnership-projects with local, national, and non-national organisations while affording the community of Birr a social amenity that promotes education, relaxation, well-being, and climate resilience. The whole community benefits from this project; including a local schools permaculture garden, welcoming members of the Community Mental Health Centre weekly, work placements and site-specific project consultation, school groups visit and they recently established another garden in the adjacent village and raised funds for the Tidy Towns poly-tunnel to grow flowers.
In total through this year’s Energia Get Ireland Growing Fund a pool of €75,000 will be awarded to community groups and voluntary organisations in order to start or further develop a community food-growing project in their area.
Nominations and applications for grants have been flooding in since the fund was announced in December 2018. Grants from the Energia Get Ireland Growing Fund are split across three categories ‘Sow', ‘Grow' and ‘Harvest' with awards ranging from €500 to €2,000 plus one very special group will receive a generous €5,000 grant for their project. The fund will support at least 86 community food growing groups from all across the island of Ireland. This is the sixth year of the fund, which has already supported over 500-community food growing projects to date, positively impacting over 140,000 people.
The successful applicants will be celebrated at a gala event, which will be held at the home of GIY, GROW HQ in Waterford on March 19th. For further details and to vote for one of the shortlisted finalists see www.giy.ie