Volunteer vacancies at ActivGardens

Volunteer vacancies at ActivGardens

ActivLives is looking to recruit keen gardeners who enjoy working alongside others to its core volunteer team.

Where you’ll be working : The People’s Community Garden, Maidenhall Allotments and the CRESS Pavilion, Ipswich, Suffolk IP2 8RE.

About ActivGardens
ActivGardens are part of Suffolk-based charity ActivLives. Our community garden is a lively, inspiring and very busy community site which supports people to lead active, healthy lifestyles, learn and share skills, and contribute to their community. Our projects work with a wide range of people, including long-term unemployed, people experiencing mental ill health, depression and anxiety, people with disabilities, young people, older people, and refugees and asylum seekers. We also work with local schools and welcome community groups, local business and other visitors.

What you’ll be doing :
We mainly need people who are confident gardeners and can help keep on top of the work. We also need people who enjoy helping and supporting others, and can assist staff in the smooth-running of the day on this busy site.

Main tasks include the following:

  • Working as part of the core volunteer team to maintain the community garden, which includes traditional vegetable plots, sensory garden, herb spiral, polytunnel cropping/ propagation, orchard and fruit-growing, nature conservation areas.
  • Working alongside the people we support to help them get the most out of their sessions
  • Assisting staff in organising and running the day
  • Helping run group sessions, including school groups and groups of young people
  • Assisting in organising and running events
  • Contributing to development of the gardens and its projects
  • Option to get involved with woodworking/ carpentry, cooking, beekeeping, other specialisms

You will gain skills in:

  • Working with a wide range of people, including people with needs; children and young people; refugees and asylum seekers
  • Public engagement
  • Gardening and horticulture
  • Nature conservation and beekeeping (optional)
  • Events organisation

Training available:

First Aid, Safeguarding and other relevant training

The time you need to give:
We are ideally looking for a minimum commitment of 3 hours per week, for a set time each week – although we understand you may need a level of flexibility.

The skills you need:
We are looking for a team player with a positive, friendly attitude and excellent communication skills, who enjoys working with people of all ages and abilities. We need someone with an active, hands-on approach, with a willingness to tackle a wide range of garden-related and other tasks.  Gardening/ horticultural experience will be an asset, but confidence, initiative and good organisational skills are also important.

  • Experience of working or volunteering with people with needs is desirable but not essential.
  • Skills associated with woodwork, nature conservation, cooking/ hospitality / catering, community education/ teaching, PR / events, will be an advantage.
  • Experience of working or volunteering with children and young people is desirable but not essential.
  • You may be able to contribute a specialist craft skill (eg flower arranging, art, crafts etc – please let us know!) – we are open to new ideas and projects.

What you’ll get out of it: This position is suitable for someone who has a keen interest in community gardening/ food growing projects and/ or nature conservation and enjoys working alongside other people. You will gain experience of working in the charity sector as part of a diverse, award-winning community project.

Contact details:  Please fill out our application form and email to Ian Hirst, ActivGardens Operations Officer ian@activlives.org.uk. Alternatively, please post to ActivLives, Brightspace, 160 Hadleigh Road, Ipswich IP2 0HH. If you have any questions, or would like an informal chat about the role, please call Ian on 07725 327819 or ActivLives 01473 345350.

To download this information in a word document please click HERE 

National Fitness Day

National Fitness Day

National Fitness Day 2021 is being held on Wednesday 22nd September and gives us all at ActivLives a great opportunity to celebrate the vital role that physical and social activity plays in all of our lives. ActivLives provide a variety of activity options on a weekly basis across east Suffolk, including Better Balance classes, Walking Football, Badminton, Boccia, New Age Kurling, Yoga, Bowls and, of course, our Community Gardens!

If you would like more detail have a look at our website at www.activlives.org.uk and/or contact us directly on 01473 345350.

Fill gaps in your garden at our charity plant sale

Fill gaps in your garden at our charity plant sale

Come along to Chantry Walled Garden, Chantry Park, Ipswich IP2 0BS on Thursday 14th October from 10am to 2pm for our end of season plant sale! There’ll be the chance to pick up an Autumn bargains for your garden, so make sure to pop by and say hello, the team at the Walled Garden will be thrilled to serve you.

The very last of our stock will be on sale, with a chance to look around this lovely walled site. Tea, coffee and cakes will be available at Nursery Cottage – so join us for a cuppa and chat to find out more about what we do.



Returning Sports with ActivLives

Returning Sports with ActivLives

After a summer break we’re thrilled to be bringing back several of our ActivSport activities, now is a great time to get out and enjoy some sport. See below for what sports are returning, the dates below are when they begin but you can join in at any point on the calendar so don’t worry if you’ve missed the first few sessions. All sessions are run in line with the latest Covid-19 guidelines (Hands-Face-Space-Fresh Air) and we always love to welcome new participants.

  • Walking Football outdoors at Gainsborough Sports Centre – Thursday 2nd September 10.30am
  • Kurling & Boccia – Saturday 4th September at Walton Community Hall 1.00pm
  • Health Walk in Christchurch Park – Monday 6th September 11am
  • ActivBadminton – Tuesday 7th September at Whitton Sports Centre 2.00pm
  • ActivYoga – Wednesday 8th September at Landseer Road Methodist Church 1.15pm (Booking required)
  • Inclusive Badminton for players with a learning disability – Wednesday 8th September at Suffolk New College 3.45pm
  • ActivBoccia – Thursday 9th September at Whitton Sports Centre 10.30am

You can see all the current sports sessions on our ActivSport Calendar HERE

Inclusive Badminton prepares to return

Inclusive Badminton prepares to return

Inclusive Badminton sessions in Ipswich, delivered  by ActivLives in partnership with Special Olympics Suffolk, will be returning for the new season on the 1st September.

These sessions are targeted at adults with a learning disability – no previous badminton experience is needed. If you would like to find out more, please email mike@activlives.org.uk or call on 01473 345350.