Garden Organic have launched new research this week to find out the impact of lovely Master Gardeners in Warwickshire, London, Norfolk and Lincolnshire.
We’re delighted to have teamed up with Coventry University to discover the health, environmental and social impacts of over 250 volunteers helping nearly 1,000 mentored households and speaking to over 15,000 residents in diverse communities.
There’s lots of good stuff coming up:
Step one: until the 30 September 2011
a) We sending questionnaires to every household mentored by a volunteer Master Gardener – all the individuals, couples and families whose 12 months free food growing advice started between May to October 2010.
All these households kindly returned a registration form to their volunteer Master Gardener with contact details and a bit about their food growing at the time. Our new, larger questionnaire collects the latest data as a very important part of evaluating the impact of the Master Gardener Programme.
b) We’re also sending questionnaires to every Master Gardener trained in 2010. Whether or not they’re still volunteering with us, we’re keen to evaluate the impact of the programme on their life. This follows a volunteer survey each Master Gardener kindly returned at their induction training.
Step two: all go in November
We’re hosting household interviews and Master Gardener focus groups in every area. It’s very exciting.
With Coventry University’s guidance, our eager co-ordination team are out and about gathering more qualitative thoughts from our beneficiaries.
Step three: going public
We’ll publish interim findings early in the 2012 before subsequent reports.
Together with other research, we’ll write to households registered from November 2010 to collect more data…
And of course, we’ll continue to publish the later numbers and case studies every quarter. Latest stories below:
Volunteers recruited, trained, and supported by Garden Organic to mentor households wanting to start growing food or grow more. The programme is funded with local support and Big Lottery Fund’s Local Food Scheme.
Researchers in the health, environmental and social impact of local food systems at the Applied Research Centre in Sustainable Regeneration (SURGE) and the Centre for Agroecology and Food Security (CAFS).