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May 2023 Good Food Lewisham Newsletter: Young People & Food, Volunteers' Week, Summer Festivals

St Winifred's School Kitchen Garden

We hope you’re enjoying the improving weather. The last month or so has seen, amongst other things, the launch of the Food Justice Action Plan which can be read here, Foodcycle celebrations, Lewisham Food Network sessions, work on the new Dignified Food Charter and planning for the next network meeting on food and young people.

Network Meeting 15th June: Food Growing in Schools / Food & Young People

Join us for the next network meeting on Thursday 15th June on schools and food growing / young people and food. We’re aiming to bring people together and get an overview of this area so we can take more action and connect people:

- Hear about food growing in schools in Lewisham

- Hear about projects working with food and young people

- Hear from young people

- Help us map what growing's happening at local schools and how we can get more schools growing more

- Brainstorm ideas for increasing and improving work with food and young people

- Help to build Lewisham Growing Network

- Hear about Capital Growth and find out about the benefits of joining their network, being on their map and accessing their resources for gardens e.g. around climate and resilience

If you can’t attend but would like to get involved or share what your school or group are doing, please get in touch.

Minutes from previous Good Food Lewisham network meetings and Steering Group meetings can be found on our website here: meeting minutes | Good Food Lewisham

Volunteers’ Week: Volunteer with a local Food Project or Growing Site

To mark World Hunger Day and Volunteers’ Week, we are encouraging local residents to volunteer with a local project. To find a role near you visit this page:

If you are part of a project in need of volunteers that would like to be included in the campaign, please email details and role descriptions to

Volunteers week (1-7th June):

New Steering Group Members

We have two new members of the GFLSGfrom Lewisham Council – Susan Mubiru - Public Health Strategist (Cardiovascular Health and Healthy Weight) in Lewisham Council’s Public Health Team and Raymond Kinsella – Principal Business Development Officer.

Investing in a better food future: The innovative role of food partnerships

On 14th June, Sustainable Food Places have organised a day of action for Food Partnerships like Good Food Lewisham. We’ll be going to the Houses of Parliament to meet MPs and other food partnerships. The calls to action include:

- Investment in a food partnership in every local authority, alongside a food strategy endorsed by the council.

- A Good Food Bill in every nation, underpinned by an independent body to champion action and scrutinise progress.

Investment in agroecological farming, small and medium size producers, and better routes to market.

- Investment in local food infrastructure and skills, and business support favouring values driven or social enterprises delivering on environmental, social and health objectives.

- Use existing public spending on food to support local and sustainable food systems and local food suppliers.

- Investment in children’s health and healthy food access programmes, including expansion of free school meals, healthy start and school fruit and vegetable schemes, as well as school and community food infrastructure to support growing, cooking and eating good food.

- Better decision-making powers for devolved governments to focus farming, economic and infrastructure investment where it can make the most impact on local economies and community wellbeing.

Join us at Summer Festivals in Lewisham

This summer we’re going to be at a number of festivals and events – it would be great to see you there. If you’d like to help us with a stall or come and say hi that would be great.

Sat 17th June - 11am – 4pm – Downham Celebrates

Sat 24th June - 12 – 5pm - Hilly Fields Midsummer Fayre:

Sat 24th June – 12 – 4pm - Bellingham Festival

Sun 25th June – 12 – 4pm - Forster Park Community Picnic

Sun 2nd July – Blythe Hill Fields Festival:

Sun 23rd July – 11am – 5pm - Food and Fun in the Fields – Ladywell Fields


Successful Food Giving Groups Roundtable 2

Another useful roundtable was held in early May at Feed The Hill in New Cross, organised by Lewisham Homes and Lewisham Local. We focused on gaining and retaining volunteers and on models of projects, such as social supermarkets. We’re considering a third one in September. If you’re interested to see more detail about the tips and tricks people shared, please contact Helen and/or Emilio on or to get the notes from the meeting.

As a result of the session, the Cargo bike that’s been living at the Lewisham Local offices has now been donated to Feed the Hill so they can improve their delivery service.

Round Table 2 at Feed the Hill, New Cross

Food Justice Action Plan Launched in April & Good Food For All Londoners Report

A well attended launch event took place at Lewisham Irish Centre. We had some inspiring speeches from Public Health, Sustain, Evelyn Community Store (ex-Mayoresses), Rastafari Movement UK, Sydenham Community Supermarket and Lewisham Irish Centre / FoodCycle Lewisham.

Creating this document has been a collaborative effort since June 2022. The next step is to build the Food Justice Alliance to work together on the actions in the plan.

Sustain did a presentation explaining where Lewisham fits in the recent Good Food For All Londoners report: They especially emphasised the importance of the 'Cash First approach', which addresses the root causes of food insecurity and poverty, promoted by the Independent Food Aid Network and others, which is the focus of the Lewisham Worrying About Money leaflet that was collectively updated with local partners at the end of 2022.

More detail here:

Launch of Food Justice Action Plan at Lewisham Irish Centre

Healthy Start Scheme & Baby Milk Formula Pathway & Free Vitamin D Scheme

We recently had some requests for more information about the Healthy Start Scheme and for advice about what to do if people coming to food banks are asking for baby milk formula. Lakhvinder Matharu (Public Health Officer at Lewisham Council, also on the GFL SG) has provided some useful information:

There will be an emergency infant milk pathway developed for Lewisham in the coming months. In the meantime, families that are making repeated visits asking for infant formula milk, including families with NRPF should be encouraged to contact Natalie Coates, Specialist Infant Feeding Health Visitor on 020 3 049 2405. The health visiting team are unable to issue formula milk, but they will offer other forms of support that might be beneficial.

Healthy Start Scheme:

- Leaflets will be available soon. See digital ones above and below. Leaflets translated in different languages:

- Families can apply for the Healthy Start benefit online: The scheme has been digitised now, there is no paper application. Families can apply by either: emailing or by calling 0300 330 7010. Phone lines are open 8am to 6pm Monday to Friday (except public holidays). Call charge information.

- Families with no recourse to public funds can also apply for the benefit providing they meet the criteria. Please email for an application form

Vitamin D Scheme:

- Information here:

- We have postcards on Vitamin D at the Lewisham Local offices, let us know if you want to collect some

Foodcycle Lewisham 7th Birthday Party

Every week, for 50 weeks of the year, Foodcycle Lewisham, through the efforts of a team of volunteers, creates a three-course community dining meal out of surplus ingredients supplied through the Fareshare platform.

To celebrate the 7th birthday of the FoodCycle Lewisham Project, we held a party at our usual time of 1.30pm on Saturday 7th May at the Lewisham Irish Community Centre. As well as our regular lovely guests from the community, we also welcomed James Walsh, Rushey Green Ward Councillor, and Janet Daby, a Labour MP for Lewisham.

The Lewisham Local choir gave a performance and other members of the Lewisham Local team offered their services as volunteers to make over 80 meals in celebration of this special day.

More information about getting a meal, volunteering and donating on their website:

Foodcycle Lewisham Party & Catford Fridge

Foodcycle staff and volunteers


Funding available for Food Growing, Foraging & Cooking Activities this summer

Good Food Lewisham has launched another small grants programme for groups to run activities on food growing, foraging and cooking with these ingredients to mark World Hunger Day on Sunday 28th May. Groups will have around 5 weeks to apply and the activities will take place in the summer in July, August and/or September. The deadline is 2nd July. Groups can apply for up to £325.

If you have any questions about this, please contact

Foraging workshop at Bridgehouse Gardens

Lewisham Growing Network


We held online and offline launch events. Some ideas that came up were: responding to food poverty through ‘grow to give’ and other campaigns supported by the council, getting more young people involved in growing around wellbeing, making food growing more visible to increase access i.e pop-up events / residency projects on the high street.

We attended the Downham Door knock (organised by Community Connections) a few weeks ago with an updated list of gardens for that area (see images). We’ll use this at events in this area over the summer.

How to join the network:

Join our Mailing List

(Approx. 2 minutes to complete!)

If you would like to receive updates about future network meetings and events and let us know what you can offer the network (e.g space / site to host a meeting & tour, a workshop / sharing of skills / presentation about your project or organization as part of the programme, marketing etc)

Growing Network Survey

(Approx 10 minutes to complete!)

If you’d like to give us a bit more info about your growing projects to support us to develop this network, we invite you to complete our short survey!

Thanks to those who have already completed this.

Any questions, don’t hesitate to get in touch by email at this address - or by phone / text / whatsapp 07463918718.

Next events:

Online session (date TBC) on Capital Growth’s Growing for Change climate toolkit self-assessment:

We’ll have a stall on Sunday 25th June 12 - 4pm at Forster Memorial Park Community Picnic event (see events below).



Reminder: Please send over any events you're doing that you'd like to be publicised in these newsletters

Workshop: The role of innovators in food system transformation 5th June

Organised by Sustain, this workshop will look at the incredible people changing the way we do things in the food system. From community led groups to values driven enterprises, we’ll be sharing some of the trailblazing initiatives from across the FoodSHIFT network that inspire change and help deliver a fairer, more sustainable and climate-friendly food system that works for everyone.

SEWN Together – a localised food growing gathering in South London 8th June

A celebration of the diversity, scale and spread of community food growing across London, this event will strengthen connections between community gardens to weave the whole Capital Growth network more tightly together. Tickets from just over £6.

Wildcat Wilderness Plant Sale 10th June

A fundraiser for the Wild Cat Wilderness community garden on Saturday 10th June 1-3.30pm. Gate next to no. 53 Riverview Park, Catford SE6 4PL (no entry from River Pool).

Herbs, vegetables, fruit bushes, strawberries plus dye plants

Refreshments available. Cash and cards accepted. Bring a bag.

All our plants are grown using Garden Organic’s Organic Guidelines from seed or cuttings and we use organic, peat free compost and recycled pots. We have herbs, tomatoes, courgettes, cucumbers, kale, beans, pumpkins and squash, strawberries, fruit bushes, dye plants and a whole host of other edible plants and things for your kitchen garden, window ledge or indoor pot. Prices between £2-5. Plus free gardening advice from the growers.

We will also be selling our homemade preserves, apple cider vinegar and other delights. All money will support the Wild Cat Wilderness, which is a project of Lewisham Local.

Monthly Food Network Meeting Zoom 15th June

Our monthly zoom will take place on Thursday 1-2pm as usual. Please contact if you’re a food giving group and would like to join. Feel free to suggest topics for these sessions. This month our colleague Don will be talking about his digital access project and our colleague Josiah will be talking about his project ‘Building People, Changing Minds’ - he’s looking for organisations to host placements for neurodiverse adults (adults with learning disabilities, autism or mental ill health).We may also talk about connecting allotments with food giving groups – if you’re already growing food on an allotment connected to your project to give to people or getting food from other allotments, it would be great if you could let us know how this works. We could look at what needs to be in place for this to work more broadly around the borough. There seems to be a lot of interest in ‘growing to give’.

GFL Network Meeting 15th June: Food & Young People

Join us on Thursday 15th June 4.30 - 6.30pm at St. Winifred’s School (St Winifred's School, Newstead Road, Lee, SE12 0SJ) to hear about food growing in schools, projects working on food and young people, Lewisham Growing Network and brainstorm how to build these. See top of the newsletter for more info and event flyer. Sign up on Eventbrite here:

Forster Park Community Picnic 25th June

London Permaculture Festival 2nd July

The festival takes place in Camden on Saturday 2nd July 11-6pm.

GFL Business Networking Meet Up 4th July

Following on from our last quarterly network meeting on local good food businesses in March, we’re hosting an informal business breakfast networking meeting. Meeting to network with other local businesses, share and discuss topics for the good food agenda. Quarterly optional meet ups for those that can make it.

This will take place at PLACE/Ladywell Lewisham Local’s offices on Tuesday 4th July 8.30 - 10am.

Lewisham Green Spaces and River Walk: A 3 Rivers Clean Up Event - 8th July

Walk through spectacular green spaces and waterways in Lewisham, learning about the sites and the wildlife along the way. This event is brought to you by Lewisham Council, Glendale Services, and GoParksLondon. Join us for a leisurely three hour walk through some fantastic green and blue spaces in Lewisham, hearing from experts and volunteer groups to learn more about their sites and the work being undertaken to make them so wonderful.


Coco Collective Wellbeing Wednesday Sessions

Every Wednesday throughout the summer until 27th September. Sign up on Eventbrite:

Regular and one off Grow Lewisham events:


Grow Lewisham’s Weekly Sunday Gardening Sessions

12 - 2pm - ‘The Plot’ - Community garden in South Lewisham

Entrance through the gate at 1 Southview Road, BR1 5RD.

Why come along? Get your hands in the soil! Connect with Lewisham growers! Spend time outdoors! Share tips, Spark ideas, Ask questions! No matter your skills or experience, everyone is welcome. Stay as little or as long as you like. You are also welcome to just pop in, say hello, check out the garden, and find out more about us. Just turn up!

Looking for a more regular gardening group? Join our Growing Collective!

By joining the collective - our team of regular volunteers - you will be added to our weekly rota to support the maintenance of our community garden which is open to all - including our beds of vegetables, herbs and flowers! All welcome, no matter your experience. There’s always lots of cups of tea and good company!

For more info contact:

Sarah: Volunteer & Workshop Coordinator, Grow Lewisham


Grow Lewisham’s Garden Lab Socials

Thursday Evenings monthly at the Plot - Community garden in South Lewisham

Enter through the gate at 1 Southview Rd BR1 5RD

Join us on our monthly Thursday evening sessions down at the plot - our community garden in South Lewisham in June, July, August to share and learn new skills, try new things & hang out!

Everyone is welcome and it would be great to hear from you if you’d like to contribute something to a session. (We have a small budget for materials, and can tell you what bits and bobs we have available down the plot!)

Some things we could do at Garden Labs:


✺gardening / growing things- (... including giving our community beds a good water!)

✺nature things- exploring the natural environment at the plot

✺arty/ crafty things - drawing, painting, textiles, fabric dyeing-

✺musical things-

✺relaxing things- chilling out, enjoying the views across south London, watching the sunset

✺building things-

✺eating and drinking things!- around the fire! Bring a snack to share or a veg to cook on the fire.

SHARE YOUR IDEAS! You can get in touch in advance if you’d like to contribute something.

Drop-in to an upcoming session:

✺ Thurs 22 June, from 5.30pm - 8.30 (ish) - *SUMMER SOLSTICE EDITION*

✺ Thurs 20 July, from 5.30pm - 8.30pm (ish)

✺Thurs 24 Aug, from 5.30pm- 8.30pm (ish)

For more info and if you’d like to contribute something to the event

Sarah: Volunteer & Workshop Coordinator, Grow Lewisham


Grow Lewisham’ June Workshops at The Plot

Community garden in South Lewisham

Entrance through the gate at 1 Southview Road, BR1 5RD. Join us for our exciting programme of workshops this June!

Booking is essential, workshops are free to attend and there are limited spaces!


Intro to Fermentation workshop with Candyce Dryburgh



FREE, rsvp essential, spaces limited

Reduce waste in the kitchen by fermenting and pickling: learn to how to ferment your own seasonal sauerkraut in this introductory workshop.

Candyce is a material researcher, baker and self directed biologist.


Herbalism workshop with Cherrelle Douglas

SUNDAY 11 JUNE, 2-5.30PM

Join herbalist Cherrelle Douglas for this knowledge-sharing and practical introductory workshop where we will explore the medicinal properties of some of the common herbs that grow around us and how we can work with them to support our health.

Discussion points include a short intro to the history of herbal medicine and the politics surrounding its use, what it means to look at our health holistically, and how living in alignment with nature and the seasons supports our health.

Cherrelle is a qualified clinical herbalist, supporting people one-to-one with a variety of health challenges, an herbal and holistic health educator, and workshop facilitator.

Book via eventbrite here:


Intro to Fungi & Mushrooms workshop with Adi’s Urban Mushrooms


Learn lots of facts about mushrooms and fungi and have some hands-on fun by building an outdoor oyster mushroom fruiting chamber for the plot to harvest our own mushrooms into the future! We will learn important facts about what mushrooms and fungi are, how they sustain themselves and their role in ecological systems, and learn how to look after oysters outdoors!

Adi has been a mushroom forager for over 40 years and has a huge passion for fungi.


For more info contact:

Sarah: Volunteer & Workshop Coordinator, Grow Lewisham


Workshop programme kindly supported by National Lottery Community Fund Together for our Planet Grant.



Reminder: Get in touch if you'd like your business to be featured as a case study here

Business Support for Community-owned Enterprises

The community business trade up programme is also offering a free learning programme and grants of up to £5,000 for early-stage community businesses that are planning to grow their trading, applications by 26th June


Appreciative Inquiry Training Follow Up & Self Assessment Tool

Thank you for those that attended our session back in March on 'how food support looks like at its best in Lewisham'. As part of the session, we shared a self assessment framework designed for groups to carry out based on the key recommendations highlighted through the participatory research with people accessing food support.

If you have had an opportunity to use the tool, we would love to hear how you found using it. Should you like some support using the tool, please get in touch and we would be happy to help.

Gardening Course at Horniman Gardens

Free, 1st June to 10th August, outdoors at Horniman Gardens. 10-week nature-based gardening, crafts and mindful activities for adults who may be socially isolated or with mental ill health. More information in this leaflet here.


NB See food growing section above for food growing funding available, deadline 2nd July

Support for Fundraising from Lewisham Local

Support for Fundraising from all the Fundraising Development Managers

Find out more about what each of the Fundraising Development Managers helps with and sign up to their newsletter here.

Spreadsheet of Food Project Funders

People at LL have been doing research into funders relevant to food groups. They have found hundreds and are going to be doing some analysis to make this information useful. If you’d like to see the full list and navigate through it before they’ve done this work, please get in touch, otherwise we’ll be sharing this info soon.


New Land Workers Union

SALT (Solidarity Across Land Trades) is a new grassroots trade union for land workers that aims to put worker's rights, social justice and equality at the heart of the food system. They have launched with an investigation into the treatment of workers, and its first-ever national gathering in Bristol on Saturday 8th July.

More info on both the inquiry and gathering here:

Claim Energy Rebate Vouchers by 30th June

Everyone gets £400 off energy bills; those on pre-payment meters get redeemable vouchers but apparently there are £millions of unclaimed vouchers nationally; and they need redeeming by 30th June 2023 or they’ll be lost.

More info at ‘Help with your energy bills: Getting a discount on your energy bill’ here

Coops Fortnight is coming up

Coops Fortnight 19th June – 2nd July:

Two Jobs at St Luke’s Church Downham

Kitchen Coordinator at The Front Room Club: London Living Wage (currently £11.95), 20 hours per week. The Kitchen Coordinator will manage the food and drink provided at the Front Room Club, line manage kitchen volunteers and helps the members to grow and resource their club. The Front Room Club is a café style drop in running from 9:30am to 2:30pm on Monday, Tuesday and Friday at St Luke’s Downham.

Community and Advice Manager: £24,000 p/a (30 hours p/w). The Advice Manager will be responsible on a day-to-day basis for developing the Front Room as a community hub and integrating an advice service into the project. They will also act as a key link person between all the work undertaken by St Luke’s Community.

For both roles:

To Enquire/Apply, for more information, to arrange a visit to the project (strongly encouraged) and details of how to apply please email or call/text 07512384653.

Closing Date: 5pm on Friday 9th June 2023

Both roles are funded by The National Lottery Community Fund

Meet members of the GFL Steering Group: Theresa Webb

Introducing members of the SG. Theresa Webb, also known as ‘Kitchen Buddy’

Lives in Hither Green (40 yrs +).

Good Food Lewisham since 2017.

Holds a certificate in permaculture design which informs the development at the first main project a local centenary sensory garden. Supports other projects including Ital CocoCollective, Verdant Lane Garden.

Naturopathic Nutritional Therapist

Wild herbal remedies tour leader

Organic and wild food recipe producer.

Enable and The Village Walk & Talk groups since 2017. London National Park City Ranger.

Hobbies: sewing, art & design, singing (Vocallective choir), salsa and swing dancing, percussion & drumming (performed at Glastonbury festival).

Theresa Webb doing some local foraging

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