Building specialist, United Living, has pledged its support to the Back to Eden project at Heath Town allotments in New Park Village Wolverhampton, with a donation of £5000. Churches for Positive Change (C4PC) who are coordinating the project, have plans to convert two formerly disused plots into a community garden with a shelter cabin.
C4PC, which is made up of Wolverhampton-based church pastors and community leaders, initiated the project back in November 2020, in response to the health inequalities prevalent among the African-Caribbean community, particularly in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The group acquired the two plots, which span around one acre, with the aim of creating a safe space for local residents to learn new skills and grow their own food. They hope the project will help stimulate community spirit and improve people’s overall wellbeing through facilitating friendships, exercise, and healthy eating.
Work began in May 2021, when the severely overgrown plots were cleared and levelled, made possible through funding from Get Active Black Country. The project has also seen support from Awards for All, the Windrush Day Grant, Carvers, and Bristol Street Motors.
The funding available fell just short of that needed to complete the project. Ruben King and Joe Jackson, project managers for C4PC, contacted Wolverhampton Homes in June 2021 in a bid to secure the extra funding.
We got in touch with our construction partner, United Living, who were quick to pledge £5000, which will go towards the cost of laying paving to divide the plots into sections for cultivation.
Tony Tyson-Phillips for United Living, which is completing millions of pounds worth of improvements to the Heath Town estate on behalf of Wolverhampton Homes over the next four years, said:
“When Wolverhampton Homes contacted us about the Back to Eden project, we were heartened to hear of C4PC’s plans for the site.
“Having worked on Heath Town for the past five years, we’ve seen first-hand the compassion, strength and resilience of the people that live there, and believe this project will help galvanise that community spirit.
“At United Living, we take pride in helping create places where people enjoy living. Our corporate and social responsibility fund is reserved for these sorts of projects and we’re more than happy to pledge our support.”
Joe Jackson from C4PC said:
“This is a fantastic project and has the ability to make a real impact in the local community by bringing all different groups of people together.
“We are extremely grateful to United Living for their financial support, the individual areas that will be created as a result of the funding will make such a difference to the project and everyone involved in it.”
City of Wolverhampton Council Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing and Heath Town ward councillor, Cllr Jasbir Jaspal, said:
“The kind donation United Living has made will make a real difference to the Back to Eden project and the local community.
“The pandemic has shown us more than ever the importance of outdoor spaces to people’s physical and mental health.
“This project, initiated by Churches for Positive Change, deserves all the support it can get to further deliver horticulture and gardening activities that encourage the adoption of healthier lifestyles and improving physical, mental and emotional wellbeing, while providing community social interaction in a relaxed natural environment.”