Castlerea VTOS Selected to showcase in BLOOM

May 22, 2019


Image shows GRETB VTOS students and members of Castlerea Mens Shed celebrating their selection for the Bord Bia showcase, BLOOM.


Students participating on the Vocational Opportunities Scheme and Castlerea Mens Shed have secured a place in the prestigious BLOOM Annual Flower & Food Festival, showcasing in the Postcard Garden category. The Postcard Garden offers community groups an opportunity to design & create a garden that represents their chosen cause, all within a three metres by two metres constraint.

The design for the garden was submitted by coordinator Kathleen McNulty who said that “for a number of years we have visited BLOOM and have always been intrigued and inspired by the effort that goes into these community projects”. We spoke last year of the possibility of putting forward a design and to work alongside the Castlerea Mens Shed in the practical application of the project.

The garden, based on redundant community spaces and the demise of community interaction in social conversation, is at the heart of the design. It is a prototype to encourage and engage the community to be more proactive in taking ownership of redundant spaces in our community. Whilst also having a positive effect in reengagement, especially through discussion and dialogue.

The garden itself is still a work in progress, using recycled materials and a number of plants that we have propagated ourselves in the polytunnel. The Art students, who are currently on the VTOS course, will be adding another visual layer to the project through a number of mixed media pieces. The Mens Shed have been instrumental in creating and assembling the structure. We hope to use the Postcard Garden at Bloom as a platform to launch our project and promote our message for the need to increase positive community interactions.

We would love it if anybody from GRETB, Roscommon or Galway are attending BLOOM, to seek us out and have a chat about the project, the show runs from Thursday 30th May until Monday 4th June. We will have students and men shed members manning the stand so please feel free to engage. You will find us just inside the main entrance.

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