Activities & Events at The Ascension Paradise Garden & Community Space
All our events and activities at The Ascension Paradise Garden and Community Space aim to reach out to the whole local community, providing opportunities for people from all different generations, faiths and cultures to come together in practical, social activities where they can learn new skills and access sources of support. We aim to continue developing a network of congruent, partner initiatives and collaborative activities and events linked into the local parish and wider community and welcome local community groups and organisations, faith groups and individuals to get in touch with their ideas.
We also need the input of enthusiastic volunteers for these various opportunities which we are developing and welcome people to get in touch to discuss how they can get involved.
Community and Parish Events
The 800 person capacity church is now being used by various community groups and local organisations for meetings and social events and the adjacent, new, 600 pupil Primary School regularly hold their ‘whole-school’ assemblies at the church, bringing the families of the pupils together from all over East Salford. Our long-standing, committed parishioners continue to hold their traditional, seasonal parish and fund-raising events such as our ever popular Christmas Fair and Harvest Festival events along with regular coffee mornings and social meetings which continue to be hugely successful, linking the church and its activities into to the neighbourhood and wider network of parishes. The venue particularly lends itself to events such as summer garden parties or large indoor/outdoor gatherings as the renovated church and grounds are also surrounded by a new, public square and mini-park, so there is the potential to host quite major community gatherings and events.
Nutritional Cooking/Catering – linked into social events & volunteer initiatives
We have a well-equipped space where nutritional cooking, using fresh fruit and vegetables grown within the Paradise Garden and from other local sources can take place. So we are now making healthy, low-cost cooking and related social activities a core focus for our activities, events and volunteer initiatives, linking it into our on-going community food growing initiative, training in life-skills and the wider activities of the parish.
Gardening, Food Growing & Bee-Keeping Activities in our Paradise Garden
Activities within the Paradise Garden are aimed at delivering practical skills training, 'learning by growing' activities and work experience for volunteers from within the community, with participants gaining experience in landscaping and horticultural tasks, organic food growing and various aspects of joinery, painting and decorating, with recent activities including the creation of a ‘living willow’ fence and the construction of 'raised beds'.
The Ascension Paradise Garden will be one of four sites in East Salford which will benefit from the introduction of a bee-hive in 2014 via the local bee-keeping initative, the 'Salford Bee Collective', under the umbrella of the 'Irwell Valley and Sustainable Communities Project'. The bee-hives will be looked after by a group of volunteers from the local community, linked into a network of local community groups who will benefit from training and practical activities involved in keeping bees and producing honey.
There are also additional opportunities for younger volunteers to potentially be supported by The Prince's Trust to develop their own micro-project with other young volunteers.
So come and get involved! We welcome volunteers to arrange a ‘taster session’ to find out a bit more about the project and we hope that everyone involved will share in our vision of a ‘Paradise Garden’ and enjoy this creative, community project.
Basic Needs Provision in Collaboration with St. Paul’s, Pendleton, Salford.
Canon David Wyatt, the Priest-in-Charge of both The Ascension Church, Lower Broughton and nearby St. Pauls Church, Pendleton, has been organising volunteers to distribute food and recycling furniture to rehouse the local homeless and refugee/asylum seeker communities for over forty years. The provision of ‘start-up’ furniture packs of basic materials to set up a home has been essential to many people from the area getting 'back on their feet' and Canon Wyatt's initiative continues to be a much valued service for the local community.
We are currently developing ways to link volunteer activities involving catering experience and food provision at The Ascension to the continuing outreach work of St. Paul's, where food provision can be organised for the most vulnerable and in need of both parishes, particularly for disadvantaged families, homeless, refugees, asylum seekers, the elderly and isolated of both parishes.