DEŠA Regional center for upbuilding community and development of civile society
City of Dubrovnik
The City of Dubrovnik recognized DEŠA as a reliable partner in development of community, educating and supporting vulnerable groups of citizens, and is villing to support and participate in the idea.
We want to enable citizens of Dubrovnik to participate in creating a more sustainable and inclusive urban food system. For a healthy sustainable future, it is necessary to connect with what we eat but also with each other. Together Citizens and local municipality will initiate community garden that is not just a place where food can be produced, but a Garden in which an intercultural community grows and grows.
Dubrovnik, south Croatia
Until the Corona crisis, the city of Dubrovnik lived solely and exclusively of mass tourism, which stifled any other development opportunity. The inner city was crowded with tourists and locals did not have a decent life. New buildings were rising in almost every green public space, and citizens lost their right to public space. Now that everything stopped, unemployment is rising, we see this crisis as a new possibility for community to grow stronger. Time is ripe for citizens to activate in a network wich aims to take back public space so we can start planning better future for all to restore balance and build resilent community that is able to face new challenges.
Urban agriculture is a mechanism for fighting socio-spatial inequalities, fostering the social economy, spreading new principles for food production and feeding people (mainly based on agroecology and permaculture). It is also a way of promoting different types of use and occupation of public spaces, assuring the right to the city and implementing activism, as well as transforming socio-spatial relationships at a local level in a way that might result in larger-scale future impacts.
It is essential that community gardens are inclusive spaces that enable a diversity of people to participate in the activity of producing food and compost. Inclusive spaces have equitable access for all members of the community and encourage a sense of safety, belonging and support. Whole proces of initiating community garden will be welcoming of all members of the community and encourage a diverse membership base: all villing residents of Dubrovnik who due to corona crisis lost their jobs, schools and kindergardens, as well as elderly population, families who needs acces to land so they can grow food for their children, residents who have no possibility to separate bio waste...
Partner meetings 3x
Promoting the project through local media and social networks
Consultation with citizens in town districts 16 x. Collected proposals of locations will be sumbmitted to City of Dubovnik for approval.
mapping community shared composting on GIS
Education on composting for residents and small family farms 2 x
workshops building a social vermicomposter at a selected location 3x
Education on regenerative agriculture and urban permaculture 2 x
Creative workshops for children in kindergartens and primary schools on urban gardens 5x
mentoring - 1x (3 days) Narrow circle of interested citizens would create a working group that would devise a design, Guide book - rules for the use of the future garden, and action plan
Community gardens are identified as outdoor recreation facility under Urban Plan of Dubrovnik and are allowed in several Urban Plan zones. There is guide book, action plan & design of community garden. At least one community garden is initiated by the citizens. Citizens finally have a place where they can bring separated bio waste and produce compost. Community is building resilence and capacity to responde to change. Social inclusion and democratic participation of socially vulnerable groups will be increased. A sense of community is stronger, active aging is encouraged, food security improved. Citizens in other parts of Dubrovnik are encouraged by the succes of the first community garden and will engage in creating new value for community in unused/underused portions of urban open space.
This initiative fit the discourse of the participatory society; it is an example of enabling residents to take initiative to regain public space, organise communal activities, practice their hobbies, produce healthy food and build a community shared composting sites. This kind of initiative will contribute to quality of life, safety, and indeed, social cohesion. It encompasses numerous benefits both for the community and the urban environment, aldo it is only a very small segment of the overall social and political movements which are addressing issues, such as sustainability, climate change, food safety, inequality or poverty but it is a grass root and democracy rises from small diverse group of people who are working on imporving their local area thus benefiting all.
DEŠA perceives the ideal community as one that uses the available resources on the principles of sustainable development. This idea will help us achive our mission to respond to the needs of our community, also it gives us hope that even during deep recesion that is building upon us right now, our community will at least create place where the most vurnelable will find possibility to grow their food and be independent.
Funding requested from Civic Europe
Personnel costs (management, administration, execution, communication, mobilisation of residents and stakeholders) 25000 EUR
workshop instructors 6000 EUR
materials for workshops 2000 EUR
guest accommodation and travel costs, catering 2000 EUR
Visibility of the project idea and activities 1000EUR
GIS 1000 EUR
contingency reserve (hall rentals if needed) 1000 EUR
We are interested if there Is a way to avoid or at least minimize possible problems in future with vandalism, security, miscommunication, violation of rules and possible gardener drop-out