Urban Harvest - Social and Environmental Resilience through Community and Family Food Gardens

Ben Getz
Published: 14 January 2021
Last edited: 14 January 2021
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Urban Harvest works with communities to design, install and co-manage ecological, beautiful and highly productive urban food gardens.

Working at the individual, family and community scales, our projects provide jobs, skills, purpose and fresh organic food to the most vulnerable communities.

Through valuable corporate social investment, we are able to provide quality infrastructure, training and ongoing support to ensure thriving and sustainable home and community food gardens.


East and South Africa
Scale of implementation
Green spaces (parks, gardens, urban forests)
Urban ecosystem and build environment
Food security
Health and human wellbeing
Sustainable livelihoods
Lack of alternative income opportunities
Changes in socio-cultural context
Lack of food security
Unemployment / poverty
Sustainable development goals
SDG 1 – No poverty
SDG 2 – Zero hunger
SDG 3 – Good health and well-being
SDG 4 – Quality education
SDG 8 – Decent work and economic growth
SDG 10 – Reduced inequalities
SDG 11 – Sustainable cities and communities
SDG 12 – Responsible consumption and production
SDG 13 – Climate action
SDG 15 – Life on land
SDG 16 – Peace, justice and strong institutions
SDG 17 – Partnerships for the goals
Aichi targets
Target 1: Awareness of biodiversity increased
Target 7: Sustainable agriculture, aquaculture and forestry
Target 14: Ecosystem services
Target 19: Sharing information and knowledge


Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa | Port Elizabeth


Our community gardens projects: 

  • Provide freshly harvested, chemical-free, packaging-free and travel-mile-free food available to our beneficiaries onsite at each of our 420+ projects! These gardens feed thousands of people every day. 
  • Provide jobs to previously unemployed community members. These individuals become garden champions who are trained by us and in partnership with our support teams, maintain beautiful and productive food gardens for beneficiary communities.
  • Our garden installations include the temporary employment and upskilling of unemployed local community members for the duration of the building process.
  • Our gardens provide outdoor classrooms and educational opportunities for school children who are invited to participate in and learn about all aspects of food gardening 
  • Our gardens use earthworm farming and aerobic composting to recycle green waste and kitchen wet waste into organic compost for use in gardens.

Contributed by

Matthew Koehorst Greenpop, IUCN Urban Alliance

Other contributors

Urban Harvest