pn3990 Community Growing 3A GROWING project set up to help integrate communities and promote healthy living has celebrated its ongoing success.

The Community Growing project is based at Middlesbrough’s Albert Park and has made use of previously unused land to develop a space for growing fruit and vegetables.

It was formed in partnership between Middlesbrough Environment City (MEC) and Investing in People and Culture (IPC) with the aim of improving both the physical and mental health of new and emerging communities through engaging them in community based activities.

 And since its inception, members of the Middlesbrough migrant community have been joined by local residents and groups from Middlesbrough Community Inclusion Service and Teesside University to get growing.

A celebration of the success of the scheme has now been held at the park in which certificates in Horticultural ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) were handed out and a meal was enjoyed which included some of the home-grown produce.

 Chair of Middlesbrough Environment City, Cllr Julia Rostron, said: “This project is about getting a community growing but has also had the effect of growing a community.

“To see so many people come together from different walks of life to find pleasure in learning new skills while improving health is wonderful.

“There is a real inclusive spirit among the whole group and they have done fantastic work in turning an unused piece of land into a community garden.”

Anyone wishing to get involved with the project should contact Bini Araia on 07411 157589 or biniaraia@gmail.com.