Community: Citrus in schools

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Fruit tree handout; Volunteers and Fruit trees for Auckland members who handed out over 500 trees last year to schools, early childhood centres and community groups. Photo / Supplied.
Fruit tree handout; Volunteers and Fruit trees for Auckland members who handed out over 500 trees last year to schools, early childhood centres and community groups. Photo / Supplied.

Community group Mt Eden Village People are planning to plant 1000 fruit trees around the Auckland region through their Fruit trees for Auckland programme.

Focusing on the local food production, the Village People have raised enough funds to double their fruit tree supply from last year and will aim to get 1000 fruit trees in the ground this year.

Thanks to a hefty grant from the Lottery Board, which will cover a third of the costs, the group will look to meet the remaining costs through funding, donations and fundraising.

Schools, kindergartens and local community members are encouraged to register on the Village People's website for fruit trees. Judith Holtebrinck, Fruit trees for Auckland coordinator, says that working with schools will benefit children by teaching them about, and giving them access to, fresh, locally sourced produce.

"We have now over 150 schools and early childhood centres signed up with us, wanting to plant fruit trees on their grounds," says Holtebrinck.

"We also work closely with other community, transition town and church groups to plant fruit trees in their local parks." The Fruit trees for Auckland project is in its fifth year.

The Mount Eden Village People also work with zero-waste initiatives, food gardens and have set up a community garden in Mt Eden's Poronui Street.

For more information, to donate or to register your interest head to www.fruittrees.org.nz

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