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About Down's

Community Farm

Down’s Estate Community Project, sometimes known as Down’s Community Farm or simply as “Down’s”, is a flourishing community hub bordering the scenic wetlands, on Old Wells Rd, Seaford. It is situated on traditional lands of the Bunurong and Boon Wurrung people.

The "Down's Estate" is the former farm of world-renowned whip and saddlemaker Harry Down. The land is now owned by Frankston City Council who have licensed our community group to use the land for community activities.

The project is co-created by passionate, hardworking and dedicated community members. Together we are creating a free, welcoming, natural and sustainable place for people to connect with each other, the natural environment and our food.

We grow food in ways that are kind to the earth and our health, host a range of community activities, workshops and events and share our knowledge and culture.  This unique space with nourishing gardens and orchards, wide-open grasslands fringed by native vegetation reaching into wetlands and huge sky with soaring birdlife will not fail to lift your spirit.

 

We welcome you to come along and join us. If you want to get involved or share your ideas, you can like and follow our Facebook page or Instagram, and visit us onsite at Old Wells Rd, Seaford, Victoria. We appreciate your support and ideas which help us to keep this amazing project exciting and connected. 

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2021 Highlights at DECP


 

  • Completion of Sustainable Indigenous Agriculture project and purchase of equipment for a moveable outdoor kitchen for cooking programs. This included ongoing collaboration with University of Melbourne and with Nairm Marr Djambana for an online community cooking workshop using indigenous foods.
     

  • The full Implementation and completion of the CEP Invasive Weed Removal Program at DECP with end of project revegetation area planted on west side of community garden. Holmesglen TAFE were an active partner throughout this project.
     

  • The launch of the DECP site infrastructure works funded by Council in November. This included new tanks, carparks, pathways, a Shed verandah and solar power.
     

  • Continued upgrade of our website wwww.downscommunityfarm.org including a focus on Ecological works and creation of a public calendar. Our newsletter got a new look and our social media kept the community updated about our offerings, sharing useful and inspiring posts from other community connected groups.
     

  • A new initiative to grow and supply fresh food to food relief organisation Theodora’s Cheerful Givers commenced during the year and is ongoing, with the group donating weekly to help meet the need for emergency food in the community.
     

  • Parts of our DECP business case were activated in our teams and subgroups, supported by 5 team planning sessions online with experienced facilitators.
     

  • In partnership with Belvedere Community Centre a Gardening for Food and Fun was developed and delivered

  • Grants were obtained for a rabbit proof fence, water infrastructure and 3 programs of Wayapa (Aboriginal Earth mindfulness sessions).
     

  • The planning work on the Farm House restoration project continued
    with Frankston Council, creating a Concept design, Indicative cost plan and fund seeking strategy.

     

  • The return to the DECP Garden in November and in person connection! Lots of collective efforts have been made to bring our cultivated area back to its best state, after getting very overgrown during Covid restrictions.

  • Huge thanks to the Committee and valued volunteers for their consistent hard work. It enabled DECP to move forward and meet our obligations, despite the many challenges of Covid restrictions. 
     

  • We were very fortunate to have other supporters of the project give us significant assistance in specialist areas during this time. We look forward to an even better 2022, with many Committee members willing to continue on in their roles this year.

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