Getting on with it
Speaking truthfully, it was selfish reasons I started working at the Comfrey Project.
I had a budget of £10,000 to buy tools and timber for building raised beds, tool sheds and a cabin. All kindly donated by Local Food to develop Walkergate allotment.
After meeting the participants and explaining what jobs we had to do, everyone ws really excited, including me.
I made plans for the cabin, ordered and collected the timber and brought it to our allotment ready to start.
That's when I realised we had some very enthusiastic and willing grafters.
Everyone wanted to help, unloading the van, taking what tools and equipment were needed for that day.
Once I'd explained how to use the tools SAFELY with lots of participants crowding round, off we went.
Eventually everything was running was smooth and I just facilitated, making the jobs run easier, explaining the plans, which, by the way, were in my head and making sure no one was monopolising the nail gun.
Et voila, oh that's Yves helping me improve my French, after a few months, we had a tool shed, a cabin, raised beds, new fencing and a pergola with a new entrance gate.
Seeing the end results, and pride on everyone's faces, and hearing participants telling their friends about what part they built, was priceless.
Our manager was always asking about work plans, strategies and health and safety. My response was "We just get on with it."
Stories from refugees and asylum seekers living in the North East in their own words.