Beam County Primary school is well on its way to becoming an eco-school. Over the past year their garden project has really grounded its roots in the local community and in the everyday lives of the pupils.

The eco-garden is a fantastic way for the students of Beam Primary school to learn outside and is seen as a natural education centre. Students have their own raised beds, a mock Anderson shelter, bike track and a pond. The pond is flourishing well and allows the children to take part in new activities such as pond dipping. Recently a functioning model of the water cycle was also created which is a massive step forward in visual learning.

In the garden the children are able to grow all types of produce such as potatoes, beetroots, green beans, tomatoes and the school has recently planted fruit trees. When the produce is ready to be harvested the school sells it to the parents and the local community giving the children a chance to enjoy the fruits of their labour! The long term goal is for the eco-garden to become self sufficient in terms of funding, with the money raised from the produce being fed back into the project to help it expand.

Unfortunately the eco-garden has come to a momentary halt and it is now seeking both funding and volunteers. Jon Cruddas MP for Dagenham and Rainham has visited the site on many occasions to see how the project is expanding and is in full support of the eco-garden project being undertaken by Beam County Primary School.

Jon commented: “This is a fantastic project helping local children fully appreciate where food comes from, and the work that is involved in growing and producing. It is also a great way to endorse urban sustainability in the local area.

“It is not only a great ecological site for the community but also a fun and innovative place of learning for the children of Beam Primary School.”

Seeing the importance of this project for both the community and the children’s education Jon is doing all he can to support them. The school is looking to invest in polytunnels, timed sprinklers, extra raised beds, planters, and more of the basics such as compost and seeds. Dagenham Ford has supported the project from the start kindly offering time, funding and manpower over the past year. However this funding has been exhausted and the garden is in need of volunteers to help maintain it.

Jon said: “I am currently urging big businesses in the area such as Homebase and B&Q to support the project in any way they can. In turn I am putting the message out to all my local volunteers, calling for keen gardeners to get involved!”

If you are interested in joining the team please contact Diana Huskie, Parent Support Adviser at Beam County Primary School on: 020 8270 6024 / 07875 397731 or via email at: dhuskie@beam.bardaglea.org.uk

Alternatively you can contact the office of Jon Cruddas MP and ask for Andrew on: 020 8984 7854