Less screen time – more green time

PermaPlay nurtures kids in nature in Melbourne’s west

kids gardening

As well as being a heap of fun, studies show that kids who grow fruits and veggies actually eat more of them. Studies also show that kids who do outdoor activities learn better, sleep better and do better in class. There are a range of benefits for kids who garden, and a child-friendly introduction to Permaculture will sow the all-important seeds of sustainability.

Perma what?

The Braybrook Sprouts and the Maidstone Marigolds are, perhaps, the youngest members of a growing global movement towards sustainable land design. With a vision for the harmonious integration of landscape and people, where people work with, rather than against nature, Permaculture is a very simple concept with the potential to solve problems on a global scale.

Gaining traction in virtually every climate around the world (including the desert, tiny urban spaces and entire landscapes such as the 9 million acre Loess Plateau in China), Permaculture is an ethical design toolkit. It enables practitioners to combine the best of natural and edible landscaping into designs that supply our needs without damaging communities and natural systems.

Permaculture Out West

Permaculture Out West (POW) is a network of enthusiasts with a vision for nurturing an empowered and resilient west Melbourne. Their work towards environmental sustainability and self-sufficiency is through local initiatives such as food swaps, cooperatives and working bees.

Caring for the kids. Caring for the earth. Sharing all the fun.

Held in the thriving community gardens of Maidstone and Braybrook, POWs PermaPlay groups introduce children to gardens and the things that grow and live in them. Kids get up close to snails and caterpillars, learn about planting, watering and reaping the rewards. Parents work together to make the garden productive, and the harvest is shared amongst its visitors.

Kids have a natural fascination with the natural world. It doesn’t have to be rare – it could be a bug, a bird or a new leaf on a plant. Letting kids get their hands dirty and reconnect with nature offers a host of learning opportunities and moments of wonder and connection. These moments are essential – because what they don’t value, they won’t protect – and what they don’t protect, they’ll lose.

Gadgets away – it’s time for PermaPlay!

Introduce your kids to the gardens and ultimately you’ll help them care for themselves, others and the earth. POW PermaPlay sessions run on Wednesdays 10am-12pm at Braybrook Community Centre and Thursdays 10am-12pm at Maidstone Community Centre. They include a shared morning tea, garden activities, stories, craft and music. Go along with a gold coin donation and a piece of fruit to share.

Participants will need Playgroup Victoria family membership ($30 per year at Playgroup Membership Victoria) Be sure to quote their playgroup number #96369 for Braybrook Sprouts and #110006 for Maidstone Marigolds.