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Maxwell Centre Community Garden Visit

The Maxwell Centre, is a community centre based in Dundee. It aims to maximise potential in the community by "Feeling well, Being Well and Doing Well". The centre offers provides services such as welfare advice, art groups, I.T. classes and community gardening.

The community garden welcomes visitors, provides locals with a place of relaxation and a place to grow and harvest crops for consumption. Crops grown in the garden include: leeks, peppers, cabbages, broad beans, tomatoes and herbs. Any produce grown is given away to volunteers or submitted to the centres food bank.

The centre aims to empower members of the community to improve the quality of their life. When it comes to the garden, this is mainly done through the social skill share of basic gardening.  They really highlight the social benefits of gardening Volunteers at the centre teach attendees how to compost, work the land, and how to grow and maintain crops. 

In 2015, the centre's social audit highlighted an increase of young people visiting the centre. Many of whom are pupils from local primary schools whom attend on a weekly basis to participate in gardening activities. While visiting the garden with my classmate Robbie, the gardens curator Jack showed us some of the activities that take place in the community garden. Activities vary from planting and harvesting crops, exploring the garden for insects, and arts and crafts like making up cycled plant pots and insect hotels.

While exploring the garden, I got chatting to a few of the visitors and volunteers. I was curious to find out what they liked about the garden, answers ranged from simply a hobbie and that they had no garden of their own. Interestingly, one described the feeling of satisfaction and rewardance thet get from contributing towards the garden. And that by contributing, they were doing something positive for their community.

Rebecca Williamson