Autumn Gathering in Donegal: Community Collaboration and Connection

Posted on: 12/09/2019

CG Ireland Autumn Event: Community Collaboration and Connection followed by afternoon AGM

Saturday 19th October 2019 – 10am to 4pm at OURganic Gardens, Gortahork, Co Donegal

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We are delighted to be visiting the home and gardens of our current chairperson Joanne Butler at her garden turned social enterprise OURganic Gardens, in Gortahork , Co Donegal.

OURgnic Gardens started six years ago as an idea for networking community gardens in Donegal. Since then it has change somewhat to become the place where Joanne and her family live and now a place where they work too. Joanne has been involved with community gardens in Donegal since 2013 but sees the importance in making her homeplace a sustainable business where people can come and she her work and passion up close.

At OURganic Gardens they run a community garden on site, sell a small amount of surplus vegetables as well as volunteer days and other various workshops in permaculture, food education and organic gardening throughout the year. This year has been Joanne’s very first year working mainly from home and next year they look forward to creating an exciting programme of events for the community and eco tourist alike.

At CG Ireland our Event Theme this year is Community Collaboration and Connection so our morning will focus around coming together and collaborating with likeminded communities and groups we align our mission with.

During our time here we will have a guided tour of the vegetable and fruit garden from Joanne who will also give us a practical demonstration on her no dig garden – We will also hear about the GROW Observatory Changing Climate Mission that CGI have been involved this year and see the sensors in action – This is an outdoor session so sensible rain gear is advised

After that we will return indoors to hear from an exciting line up of speakers. We are pleased to have Meave O Neill the head of Zero Waste North West who will talk about her work over the past year with Zero Waste. Zero Waste North West is, a local campaigning group working locally towards zero waste, supporting the global movement.

Meave will be followed by Sinéad Moran from Foodture who will talk with us about their fantastic grass roots initiative set up as a social enterprise. Foodture works to empower citizens with the information and tools to eat sustainably for people, place and planet. Discover and connect directly with farmers and producers on their Fair Food map. Their objective is to nurture a culture of food citizenship and help build strong community support around these Fair Food farmers, producers and more in Ireland. OURganic Gardens is a member of Foodture and you can be too, so come along to find out more from them!

After all that talking, we will have an opportunity for a break out session with Conor O Kane from Derry community gardens. Conor will delight us all with some Komboucha from the Scooby Shack tasting a pro biotic bamboozlement! You will leave feeling refreshed and fulfilled!

Joanne will be providing a lovely homemade lunch and after that we move onto our Annual General Meeting for committee members and anyone interested in finding out more about community gardens news and updates. This meeting will take approx. 90 minutes but is an essential part of our gatherings.

As the day comes to a close there is a final opportunity for networking and further collaboration, so make sure Saturday 19th October is on your ‘must do’ this coming Autumn and we look forward to welcoming you at the CGI Autumn Gathering!


10:00 – Arrivals, Registration and Meet and Greet. Grab a cuppa, get to meet everyone, find out where they’re from and what they’re up to, and swap contacts… trust us, after this day you’ll want to keep in touch!

10:30 – guided tour of the vegetable and fruit garden from Joanne who will also give us a practical demonstration on her no dig garden

11:30 – Break (15 mins )

11.45 – 12.15 – Meave O Neill the head of Zero Waste North West

12.15 – 12.45 – Sinéad Moran and Nathalie Markiefka from foodture

12.45 – 1.15 – Break Out with Conor O Kane and the Scooby Shack

1.15 – 2.15 – Lunch

2.15 – 3.45 – Annual General Meeting – News from Community Gardens Ireland

3.45 – Closing session

How to book?

If you’re planning on joining us, we really need you to book your place in advance for two reasons:

1: We need to know how many people will be there on the day to make sure there will be enough room… and enough tea and Kombucha ! … for everyone.

2: CG Ireland does not receive any funding and all our staff work as volunteers.

Your contribution covers running costs for the day, and we couldn’t do it without you!

We like to make our events fair and affordable for everyone, so there are three pricing options:

The Standard Supporter – €25.00

This covers all the running costs for the day, and includes the venue donation, a light lunch and all other refreshments.

The Skint Supporter – €5.00

We’d hate anyone to feel excluded just because they’re strapped for cash, so this option covers the cost of lunch and refreshments and you get all the talks and workshops for free. PLEASE, respect the hard work that the CG Ireland crew do and ONLY use this option if you genuinely can’t afford the full price.

The Super Supporter – €40.00

Maybe you’ve had a good week. Maybe you’re feeling a bit flush. Maybe you could consider paying a little extra to support not just this event, but all of the work that CG Ireland does all around the country, all through the year. If you can afford it we’d be eternally grateful for your contribution!

Want to help but can’t come along? You can always support our work by making a donation HERE



The location of OURganic Gardens can be found on google maps :

OURganic Gardens Donegal or Eir Code F92TV06


There is the option to camp for free at OURganic Gardens on the Friday or Saturday evening – but remember it will be in October in NW Donegal (please do speak to Joanne about this prior to event.

Another option is to stay at the Mountain View, Meenderry, Falcarragh

The house is set in a rural area, with fantastic views of the mountains, situated on the Wild Atlantic Way, yet only 5Km drive to the town of falcarragh. It is ideal area for walkers, fishing, surfing, photography and for young families with kids If you need any other help on accommodation or transport please contact us directly and we can help arrange something that suits .

Or check out Air bnb for more details – searching Gortahork


No problem… email us at or TEXT Dee on 087 6843374 or Joanne on 0861789971

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