How borough councils can help
Local authorities across London and the UK are supporting food growing in schools in many different ways. See why and how school food growing can benefit your borough.
Please use the following tools to help promote food growing in your borough.
We recommend borough councils take the following three steps to get started:
- Identify designated contacts within your council to promote food growing directly to schools such as Healthy Schools leads, Education and Communication officers
- Use our toolkit (see above and digital assets below) to promote food growing to schools in your borough via your communication channels
- Contact Adam Wright, FGSL Communications Executive, to get support and to find out how your borough is doing based on our research: email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0247 630 8221.
Take local action. We can help you develop local borough food growing strategies that:
- Nurture and support your schools who have existing growing initiatives and create local flagship schools to inspire others to grow;
- Develop a local action plan for delivering a borough-wide approach to food growing;
- Set up a food growing partnership, identifying and networking with local organisations;
- Consult with local people, community groups, businesses and social landlords about food growing ideas and encourage them to work with their local schools.
Useful Digital Assets
- FGSL promotional brochure (pdf)
- Benefits of growing food (pdfs)
- Infographics (jpegs)
- Food Growing Schools: London logos (jpegs)
- White (coming soon)
- Food Growing Schools Partnership logo strip (jpeg)
- After School Teachers Forum example (pdf)
- London Food Growing Schools case studies (link to pdfs)
- Hyperlinks (list of useful links)
Additional Information and Context
Our research shows that incorporating food growing into whole school activities, across curriculum subjects, and with local community support has a significant impact on health, the economy, education, community cohesion and the environment, for all.
Read how the Tri-borough (City of Westminster, the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham and Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea) have come together to help encourage food growing through the Healthy Schools London programme.
Food Flagship Boroughs
The London boroughs of Lambeth and Croydon won c£600k to pioneer school-based & community projects to improve health and attainment, beating 20 other boroughs who applied. Announced by the Mayor of London, Lighter London, the ambitious pilot project ran from September 2014 to January 2017. Read More
Good Food for London - Report 2017
The Good Food for London report measures progress and encourages London councils to take action on good food. It measures action on 11 different good food measures including food growing and school food. The league table scores range from 88 to 13 per cent.
Lambeth: A borough-wide approach to food growing
The partnership initially started by writing a strategy along with mapping the various strands of work already taking place. It was also important to bring together the right partners from within various Council departments, the NHS, education, food growing projects and representation from the newly formed ‘Incredible Edible Lambeth’.
Lambeth Council’s initial journey into the world of food growing came through their Green Community Champions programme . In the first year more than 40 projects were set up, mainly down to the huge interest in food growing in the borough. This was helped by a pro-active Council officer who recognised the benefits of these projects and offered advice and support to local groups and colleagues.
This gave rise to a new way of thinking when working with local people, providing a more supportive role rather than a leadership role. This resident-led approach to food growing projects has helped shape other Council agendas and is challenging Council officers to work more directly with local people in other areas of work. As projects developed and local people requested greater support it was decided to create the Lambeth Food Partnership with a launch in June 2012.
The Lambeth Food Partnership has ten aims:
- Education - Provide education and learning initiatives both in formal and informal settings across the Borough to raise awareness of sustainable food issues.
- Networking - Provide networking opportunities to improve the connections between the various components of the food system, to share good learning and encourage partnership working.
- Policy - Ensure that all policies and strategies across the Borough, for example planning, economic development, support a sustainable food system in Lambeth.
- Food poverty / Access - Improve access to healthy affordable food for all residents.
- Waste - Reduce food related waste in Lambeth – reduce, re-use and recycle
- Land - Increase access to land for growing and other food related activities for residents and community groups.
- Culture/Behaviour change - Celebrate the cultural diversity of food in the Borough, encourage positive behaviour change to support health and wellbeing and provide opportunities for community engagement in food activities.
- Environmental sustainability - Promote food produced in ways which conserve and enhance the environment and contribute to a reduction in carbon emissions.
- Procurement - Introduce procurement policies within public institutions e.g. schools, hospitals which include sustainable and nutritious food, and which support animal welfare and fair-trade.
- Local economy - Encourage the development of a vibrant local food economy, support food related SMEs and local food growing initiatives.
Lambeth - a borough wide approach to food growing (download PDF)