CHILDREN who attend Orange occasional childcare and family day care now have the ability to grow their own vegetables and learn about the environment after the centre received a grant from Orange Credit Union.
An unused space around the side of the cottage which houses the childcare centre has been transformed into a vegetable garden, complete with two raised garden beds, a water tank and a compost bin.
The first seedlings were planted by children at the opening on Wednesday tying in with Planet Ark’s National Tree Day on July 27 and the school’s tree day on July 25.
The vision of the centre’s staff was to give children more ownership of the building by being able to grow and nurture plants as well as being able to cook the harvested produce and take vegetables home, and co-ordinator of the centre Megan Dawson said it was great to see the project finally come to fruition.
“It’s about teaching them to care for the environment, and also what they can do with food scraps,” Ms Dawson said.
“We began discussing it at the start of the year, and then in February we received the grant from the credit union, so for the past six weeks we’ve been putting it all together.”
The centre received $1000 which covered all the associated costs of the garden, and Orange Credit Union marketing manager Noelle Cornish said the garden tied in with the institution’s own internal environment sustainability program.
“We support a lot of the garden programs in the schools in the area, and what we’ve noticed is there is a focus on the environment,” Ms Cornish said.
“So this was a great opportunity for us to support the centre and the environment.”