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Stories of kindness from Incredible Edible Stranraer

By Sara Venn

We love to hear about what groups across the Incredible Edible network get up to, so contact us if you would like to share your stories and learning.

Recently we had a chat with the great folks at Incredible Edible Stranraer. They have several gardens across the town, have worked with the local school and are really connecting the community across Stranraer to come together over food and growing. They have regular events, whether they are opportunities to get involved with the gardens, or to come along and join the community at a barbecue or other event, the aim is to ensure that our motto of ‘if you eat you’re in’ is followed!

What struck us as being truly special were the comments made by their wider group about just how important the project has become to them, and how it has enhanced their lives. With World Kindness Day this week (13th November), what better time to share those comments with the world, and focus on how joining an Incredible Edible group, or creating your own, is life enhancing for all.

Alison says… “I love being a part of it and am amazed at the difference it has made to the town. In particular I love that some of our young people, who struggle to find an active and productive place in the community, have contributed to something that they can be proud of. You can see the delight in their faces when they see something they have planted (runner beans!) and when they tell their classmates what they have been learning.  I am just so sorry that I get so little time to spend at the garden – another thing to add to my list of reasons to look into early retirement!”

Anne says… “I have met lovely new friends and picked up all sorts of gardening tips. It’s great to feel part of such a friendly group and to be giving my time for the good of the community.”

Janine also loves the friends she has made, commenting, “I love the fact that I have made a whole bunch of new friends. I particularly like the fact that we’re improving the town and showing that people care and take pride in our lovely wee town.”

Wilma agrees. “I enjoy meeting new friends and the acceptance of the “new” me by the members.  Incredible Edible has given me a great deal of satisfaction and it’s given me a new purpose in life. It’s got me out of the house and the rut I was in. Now that I am pushing 70, unfortunately I have decided to take a back seat but I will still attend; after all someone has to make tea and coffee for the ladies and Davy!”

Carol adds, “I get great enjoyment from coming to the garden, making new friends and my favourite thing this year was the kids planting pumpkins and our summer barbecue. I also enjoyed meeting the residents from Thorney Croft Old Folks Home when they came to visit!”

And finally, Norval adds, “The feeling of satisfaction from tidying a messy public space and the reactions from passers-by is lovely. The planting, growing and sharing of food feels so good, sharing our stories with each other, not being judged, being accepted as a valued member of our group with every contribution being appreciated, sharing laughter, tea and biscuits – these are some of the reasons I love being a part of this group.”

What struck us as being so moving is that here is a group focused on each other and their community, looking after each other and creating an edible landscape whilst spinning the Incredible plates and ensuring everyone could feel that they had their place within the group and its wider sphere. We are excited to see how they expand and do more next year!

Click here to find an Incredible Edible group near you, or sign up to the website to access our Getting going section with loads of resources on setting up a new group.