Competence Center for Urban Gardening
IFZ supports Forum Urbanes Gärtnern (FUG) to establish a competence center for socially inclusive, urban food production. This competence center will combine the following components: production basics (resources and seeds), educational activities (in-school, out-of-school), social gardening and solidarity-based food production.
In Graz, urban gardening primarily has a social function through community gardens. However, there is often misinterpretation in the public representation: either on the one hand hopeful in connection with food production, or on the other hand as "hobby gardening".
The client Forum Urbanes Gärtnern (FUG) advocates for a differentiated view on urban food production spaces since its foundation in 2015, and was addressed by many requests (expertise and implementation projects) from various urban gardening initiatives since the beginning of 2022. This led FUG to reorganize its activities on a new basis. For this purpose, the idea of establishing a competence centre for socially inclusive urban food production was born. This competence centre should combine the following components: production basics (resources and seeds), educational activities (in-school, out-of-school), social gardening and solidarity-based food production.
Against the background of its relevant expertise in research work on urban gardening in Graz, the IFZ was commissioned to support the FUG in developing a business and organizational model for such a competence centre, which should take the specific contextual situation and related needs in Graz into account. The advisory service is based on extensive research into good and best practice examples, drawing on results from current research on social gardening and urban food supply, and includes a series of co-creative workshops.