A new film, Grow Your Own has been released which centres on the allotment and the part it can play in forming communities from individuals. It is based on a real project to give Balkan War refugees allotments in Liverpool. Gardening as therapy for those who have experienced real trauma is increasingly recognised as beneficial, as The Medical Foundation for the care of victims of torture has found in its work with torture survivors. Those involved in the charity’s natural growth project find it easier to talk about the past outside, on one of the projects allotments.
Grow Your Own follows the lives of the plotholders over a year, and focuses on the changes which ensue when two new tenants arrive: Diveen Henry’s widowed Zimbabwean émigré Miriam (with son in tow) and broken, Chinese mute Kung Sang, who’s unable to care for his two kids. As the seasons pass, the elder tenants and their new neighbours begin to connect and, inevitably, grow along with their produce. The full review can be seen here