In this modern age, it’s more important than ever to educate our children about the importance of healthy eating and sustainability. One of the most effective ways to do this is to provide kids with an understanding of where their food comes from – which is exactly what Rebecca Mumford from Greenhill Living is doing.
Greenhill Living is an organisation focused on the basic necessities of human survival. It was established by Rebecca in 2010, after she left a career in the finance industry to pursue her passion of giving back to the community. Rebecca established a popular and educational food garden at her daughter’s kindergarten. It was so successful that Rebecca now travels around to various kindergartens and primary schools in South Australia teaching the origins of our food and how nature works to grow the food we eat.
Rebecca said, “These days, it’s too easy to believe food comes wrapped in plastic from our supermarket shelves, therefore we don’t value the cost, time, skill and effort taken by our farmers to grow it.”
As part of the Greenhill Living Food Garden Program, Rebecca creates a food garden at the selected schools and kindergartens which she uses to educate children in conjunction with her inspiring series of books, The Garden Gang collection. Rebecca wrote the books to introduce students to different gardening concepts, including how different seasons impact garden growth, the importance of getting the soil just right, the lifecycle of different plants and insects, and more. The contents of each book are then used to help students apply what they’ve learned to their food garden to keep it alive during the changing seasons of the year.
Rebecca said, “Each time I planted something in the food garden, I wanted my books to help illustrate the lifecycle of the plants, so the children understood how long the plants would take to grow and what they could expect to see in the process.”
Her latest book, Bill the Bush Tucker Boy, aims to raise awareness and encourage the journey to discover more about our edible Australian native food plants. It was launched at Burnside Primary in May, where a sample of the plants mentioned in the book were planted in a new Bush Tucker garden to celebrate the launch.
The inspiration for Bill the Bush Tucker Boy arose after many teachers showed interest in learning more about native foods. Rebecca set out on her own journey of discovery, using augmented reality to help readers understand the habit of these plants while providing some added entertainment.
Rebecca used Neutrog’s Bush Tucker fertiliser when planting the garden and has seen positive results in the growth of the plants already. “In just over 2 months, the plants have grown rapidly and look very healthy. It certainly is a very healthy sample of plants from the book growing in this garden.”
Rebecca is also establishing a community Bush Tucker Garden out the front of Lady George Kindergarten at Highgate, where she hopes to inspire the wider community to plant edible Australian native food plants in their own gardens. We look forward to sharing the results of the garden in our next newsletter.