Volunteering in a school kitchen garden program : cooking up confidence, capabilities and connections!

Townsend, Mardie, Gibbs, Lisa, Macfarlane, Susie, Block, Karen, Staiger, Petra, Gold, Lisa, Johnson, Britt and Long, Caroline 2014, Volunteering in a school kitchen garden program : cooking up confidence, capabilities and connections!, Voluntas, vol. 25, no. 1, pp. 225-247.

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Title Volunteering in a school kitchen garden program : cooking up confidence, capabilities and connections!
Author(s) Townsend, Mardie
Gibbs, Lisa
Macfarlane, Susie
Block, Karen
Staiger, Petra
Gold, Lisa
Johnson, Britt
Long, Caroline
Journal name Voluntas
Volume number 25
Issue number 1
Start page 225
End page 247
Total pages 23
Publisher Springer New York LLC
Place of publication New York, N.Y.
Publication date 2014-02
ISSN 0957-8765
Keyword(s) School kitchen garden program
Benefits and motivations of volunteers
School-community engagement
Volunteering in schools
Summary This paper reports on the evaluation of a kitchen garden program in primary schools in Victoria, Australia. It focuses on the motivations, impacts, and issues associated with volunteering in the program. The study revealed that volunteers are drawn from a range of sources, including: families of current and former students, former teachers, local residents, clients of aged care and/or disability services, other schools and communities, local universities, community organizations, the community services sector, and the corporate sector. Benefits to volunteers included: opportunities to use time productively, an increased sense of belonging, learning opportunities, and an increased sense of self-worth and enjoyment. For schools, volunteers enhanced engagement between the school and the local community, enabled them to engage more effectively with hard to reach groups, and increased student engagement. In addition, the involvement of volunteers improved the sustainability of the program, improved communication between teachers and families of students from minority ethnic groups, and gave students the chance to relate to new people, to learn from their experience and to have fun in working with the volunteers. Perhaps the most telling benefits to flow both to students and to volunteers were not the “three Rs—reading, w’riting and a’rithmetic” but the three Cs—confidence, capabilities, and connections. However, a clearly identified issue was the importance of matching volunteers’ motivations and needs with the roles they play to sustain current levels of volunteering and, therefore, the program itself.
Language eng
Field of Research 111712 Health Promotion
Socio Economic Objective 920208 Health Policy Evaluation
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30048889

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: School of Health and Social Development
Higher Education Research Group
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