The week before I started repeatedly checking the weather forecast. Organising an outdoor event in October has its drawbacks- and on Thursday it went from being clear skies to overcast. Soon, rain was to follow. However, that was not going to come in the way of Green Shoots and Bandstand Beds joint fundraising picnic, A Taste of Asia on the Common, at the community run vegetable garden in South London.
Green Shoots, fundraising for there vegetable garden projects in Cambodia, and Bandstand Beds, aiming to tail off their “pathway fundraising” efforts felt this picnic would be a perfect way to get people together over plates of food- all prepared on-site in the brand new shipping container kitchen, using produce grown in the garden. Our menu was created and executed by Limbudi, a small catering company in London aiming to curb food-waste by sourcing local ingredients or surplus. On the menu was a warming coconut curry using courgettes and squashes (such as Tromboncino) from the Bandstand Beds plot served with a salad (freshly picked)- and it honestly, does not get fresher than that!
For dessert a vegan lemon and cardamom cake was baked- while the cake turned out more crumbly than anticipated, it went down well and recipe was requested! (so its linked here, again)
Although a steady drizzle persisted for an hour, or so, it was not quite the drawback as anticipated. By 1 pm a steady stream of bandstand bed volunteers, new comers and supporters followed. Plates of curry were dished out; sentiments on food-growing, South London living and the communal aspect of eating together were exchanged. As more guests arrived, the recurring notion of “food running out” presented it self. However, that was just another opportunity to turn towards our “live” pantry and throw together a quick stir-dry on the massive paella pan. Thank you to UCL Voluntary Services for providing student volunteers who helped with the smooth running of the event and taking photographs.
In total we raised around £ 200 pounds, which is amazing for a rainy October afternoon. For Green Shoots, all funds raised between now and Christmas are being matched by the Big Give. (Some tips on fundraising here)
The donations from this picnic will be split between Green Shoots and Bandstand Beds, and we hope to see all our lovely supporters again in 2018 for an equally exciting fundraisier picnic.
Green Shoots has been working in Cambodia since 2012 in government run schools, introducing agriculture skills within the rural education curriculum. We have 42 vegetable gardens, over 3,000 students and 47 teachers trained in the skills of setting up and managing a School vegetable garden. Our plan for 2018 is to establish a purpose-built training area, in this rural part of Cambodia, for out-of-school youth that have a keen “green thumb” and entrepreneurial spirit.
Join our next fundraiser: A Supper Club in Brixton: https://www.tickettailor.com/checkout/view-event/id/119579/chk/df92
*all photos taken by Wanlu Chen