Just over a year ago the Futureposts went in and Te Maara Kai o Wirihana began to take shape, since then a lot has happened. An incredible 300m2 of the garden has been cultivated and is currently producing approximately 10kg of vegetables for the school and local community each week. This is an amazing accomplishment considering the different challenges we have been faced with including Covid-19 and a drought.
We would like to thank Auckland Council, Foundation North, Fisher & Paykel, Lion Foundation, Dragon Foundation and Four Winds Foundation for their incredible support during this time.
Rory, Permaculture Specialist at Permakai, is very proud of the work that has been achieved, "all of this is being done by the students, 30 of whom turn up every Wednesday to weed, till, rake, dig, sow, and harvest, supported by a dedicated band of teachers." Manurewa High School has employed an ex-horticulture student on a part time basis to help maintain the garden on the days the students are unable to.
"The Middlemore Foundation has been amazing and has arranged for donations of compost, water tanks, an irrigation system, tools and a container to put them in, a "pod" which we will fit out as a kitchen” mentioned Rory. Manurewa High School has kindly connected the garden to their main water system for hand and produce washing which has been very helpful. During the Covid-19 lockdown period, seedlings were grown and distributed around the community. This was greatly appreciated by whānau in South Auckland, particularly as the garden centres did not have any. This coming year, we will see an increase in vegetable growing and the development of a permaculture food forest integrated with a Rongoa Maori. We have come a long way with increasing engagement from Manurewa High School, the community and our sponsors.
Thank you very much to all our donors for supporting Te Maara Kai O Wirihana. We cannot wait to continue progressing the garden and help our vulnerable community.