HOW IT ALL BEGUN
Last year, at Pozitiva Samobor, we took the first step towards realizing our long-term dream.
Since 2011, we have been actively implementing local and international programs based on non-formal education methods, with children and young people at the heart of our work. So far, we have implemented our programs in different locations, taking into account the available opportunities and needs of the participants. However, we have long developed a vision to launch our own rural education center where we will be able to promote sustainable practices and create a magical space for the personal growth and development of the youngest members of our community. And not just them, but all individuals and organizations that can benefit from participating in our programs.
Therefore, in 2020 we invested all our organizational resources in the property (a house with a garden and agricultural land) in Vrhovčak near Samobor.
Considering the topics that the Association deals with (environmental protection, sustainable development, gardening, healthy eating, active lifestyle, etc.), rural environment and natural surroundings were the basic determinants of the future space. Apart from the local ones, the vision was for the space to be used for international youth projects (primarily within the Erasmus + program and the European Solidarity Force), which is why the process of equipping the space with adequate accommodation and work capacity was initiated.
ABOUT ECO EDUCATIONAL FARM
The diligent hands of the young Pozitiva team took significant steps in 2020 and 2021 to open the Greenville eco-education farm.
The association has focused its operational and financial capacities on arranging 1964 m2 of land with an existing residential building and an auxiliary building for the garden, indoor work space and agricultural land.
Landscaping work began in July 2020 , and consisted of the arrangement of dormitories, toilets, work space and landscaping.
The property currently contains:
- residential building with accommodation for 21 people, internal work space and toilets;
- small orchard with organically grown domestic fruit varieties;
- vegetable garden with 10 raised beds;
- barbecue and fireplace;
- a spacious meadow for holding outdoor workshops.
Our vision is to turn the property into an eco-education farm called Greenville, which will become a training ground for creating young ambassadors of sustainable development.
Since July 2020, we have invested organizational resources and personal savings in arranging and equipping the property (arranging dormitories and toilets, introducing sustainable energy sources, arranging work spaces, horticultural landscaping).
In cooperation with the Erste Foundation, at the level of the entire Erste Group in 2020, a program for refund of interest paid on loans - 0 Interest Loans Program was implemented. It was intended for the non-profit sector in the countries in which the Group operates, and which was excluded from the state aid program to mitigate the effects of the pandemic.
Under this program, Erste Bank gave us an additional loan as an investment in equipping an eco-education farm.
You can read more about the cooperation at the following link .
PREVIOUS PROGRAMS ON THE FARM
CREATION AND ARRANGEMENT OF THE GARDEN
In the period from 28.03. to 03.04. within the ERASMUS + youth exchange Greenland , Pozitiva Samobor hosted 24 young people from Romania, Macedonia, Turkey and Croatia. You can find more about the project at the following link .
The main goal of this project was to increase the knowledge of the participants on the topics of sustainable development, environmental protection and active lifestyle. Through a set of theoretical and practical activities, the participants created their own garden , which will serve as a training ground for further education of children and young people about growing their own vegetables.
The garden consists of 10 wooden raised beds in which the participants planted different types of vegetables and spices such as radishes, lettuce, cucumbers, celery, carrots, broccoli, chives, asparagus and others.
START OF EDUCATION IMPLEMENTATION
The first use of the garden as a small educational polygon was realized within the project "Our healthy corner" , which was financed by the Zagreb County. You can find more about the project at the following link .
The association hosted 19 students from the regional school in Strmec, who through interactive workshops learned about the beneficial properties of various types of vegetables, the characteristics of a healthy diet and acquired practical planting skills.