Fruit-full Schools (www.fruitfullschools.org)
Fruit-full Schools was a Big Lottery funded programme delivered between 2010 and 2014, managed by Learning through Landscapes and delivered in partnership with Garden Organic and Common Ground. The programme aimed to connect children and young people with nature, engage them in hands-on learning about the benefits of local food and enable them to take positive action for their environment. Children from 50 secondary schools across the country researched, designed and planted community orchards in their school grounds, including grafting their own trees!
The secondary schools also supported a further 150 primary schools (or apple pips!) to grow their own orchards. The Fruit-full Schools' orchards will eventually produce over 50 different types of heritage apple varieties and by working creatively with parents, local communities and vulnerable groups children have been able to share the fruits of their labours with over 8,000 people so far.
OASES provided support as the coordinator of Fruit-full Schools for the North East region, working in 5 Secondary Schools and their partner primaries across Sunderland and County Durham (Kepier Academy, Easington Community College, Elemore Hall School, Red House Academy and Villa Real School).
Throughout the project the schools have included a number of new events in their schools calendars including celebrations for Apple and Blossom days. They have learnt to graft, plant and care for their apple trees and should be able to harvest fruit in their own schools grounds for many years to come.