Nourishing our Community
BDCA believes that everyone should have access to healthy, affordable, locally produced food, as well as fresh air! So we provide year-round opportunities for local people to enjoy gardening, growing, sharing and learning about food together.
Update 22 July 2020
Our green-fingered team has been busy at work getting our lovely East Ham Community Garden into shape and it's looking great!
Want some gentle exercise in the fresh air? Then why not join us for one of our gardening sessions every Friday 10am-1pm and Saturday 1pm-3pm. They are free and open to all (and we welcome accompanied children!)
We’ll provide gloves, gardening tools and additional measures to keep things COVID-secure. As we're limiting numbers, we'd just ask you to arrive on time and bring your own drinks and snacks.
We hope to open the garden for private event bookings soon too. So if you're planning a celebration or just fancy a get-together, please look out for updates!
Please avoid public transport if possible, self-isolate if you or a member of your household experiences COVID symptoms, and do not visit if shielding or clinically vulnerable.
Grow Together Be Together Community Garden
Thanks to funding from the Big Lottery’s Local Food Fund, BDCA were able to transform the previously derelict North west corner of Flanders Playing Field into a beautiful community garden where local residents of all ages can work together to help grow fruits, vegetables and herbs. The garden is packed full of innovative ‘green’ features and food growing facilities including: a compost toilet, raised food growing beds, pond, polytunnel, outdoor cob oven and bonfire area. The majority of the building work was completed in time for the spring 2013 planting season and we enjoyed a wonderful community launch event on Saturday 20th April:
Our usual garden activity timetable:
- Free community gardening and food growing workshops. Join us from 10am–1pm every Friday and 1-3pm every Saturday to enjoy getting your hands dirty in the fresh air while helping to grow food for our neighbours in need. No previous experience required. Children are very welcome to come with a responsible adult. Light refreshments, gloves and tools are provided. Family-friendly nature=themed craft activities are available at the Saturday sessions too.
- Free community celebration events throughout the year. Local residents from all walks of life are invited to come together and enjoy free food, crafts and family-friendly activities to celebrate the festivals of Christmas, Easter, Eid and Diwali. Follow us on twitter @bdca247 and www.facebook.com/bonnydowns for upcoming dates.
- 'Outdoor classroom' lessons for Primary School children. Our garden is an ideal venue for day time lessons and after school clubs. Click here to find out more about purchasing bespoke lesson packages tailored to your curriculum.
Other food related activities led by other BDCA projects:
- Free Community Lunch led by our Poverty Response Team from 12 until 2pm every Wednesday in Bonny Downs Church Hall offering free meals created from the produce harvested in our community garden and donated surplus goods from local businesses. Open to people accessing our foodbank or experiencing food poverty.
- Older people's lunch club led by our Elders Team from 12pm until 1pm on Tuesdays at The Well Community Centre serving hearty home cooked meals for residents over 50 years.
- Meals for children in need our Growing Strong project provides free nutritious meals during our toddler groups, after school clubs and school holiday schemes.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0208 586 7070 for more information about The Well Cafe or the Grow Together Be Together Garden.
Gem's Delights Cafe
Local catering company Gems Delights took over management of The Well Community Cafe in January 2019. Social entrepreneur and Cafe Manger Gemmia, serves delicious African, Caribbean and English dishes from 9am - 6pm weekdays.
BDCA staff and centre users are big fans! We loved our Christmas party feast and the Elders Lunch Club enjoy their hearty homemade meals. Jerk chicken, vegan curry, homemade soup and jollof rice are firm favourites.
Check it out for yourself by popping in to The Well (49 Vicarage Lane, East Ham, E6 6DQ). There's a free internet cafe, wifi and comfy lounge area too.
Or you can call Gemmia on 07468 878 978 to preorder your takeaway dinner to collect on the way home or get a quote for your event catering.
Bonny Downs Community Association is a registered charity number 1071625.
Registered office: The Well Community Centre, 49 Vicarage Lane, East Ham, London E6 6DQ