This programme will focus on the role of local community activism in addressing climate change and related challenges faced by urban centres. Following Purcell and Tyman’s (2014) assertion that growing food can be a ‘radical intervention’ in city life, it will focus on the creation and development of community gardens and the potential for these initiatives to create synergies for wider environmental change beyond local communities by influencing, stimulating and supporting behavioural and attitudinal change. The programme moves beyond traditional approaches to community gardens that focus on individual mental wellbeing towards more collective forms of community action and awareness on issues impacting on wider urban environment, with focus on issues of “the right to the city”. As such, the programme will explore how community gardens can create positive impacts for diverse voices to come together in collective action to enhance rights, choices and decisions across the urban environments and reclaim residents’ right to the city (Harvey, 2003).
A series of international workshops will be organised with the key aim of building capacity to influence individual and collective changes that can mobilise local communities to be more active to address environmental challenges – such as reuse of organic waste, production of food and strengthened links with wider urban issues that impact on most vulnerable groups.