The GIYO group began due to people coming to the Growers’ Market stall to ask for advice about starting a veg plot. Having helped several people to get started by visiting their plots/gardens, it was decided that a support group would help. That is the GIYO group we now have. Spreading the word is a key element of the work of both Garden Organic and Transition Town Letchworth of which GIYO are a sub group.

A review of the 2018 GIYO programme revealed that the most attended meetings were at the beginning and end of the year and one roughly in the middle. The April Spring Talk is a separate event and is always well attended.

The meeting discussed what members want from the group. Everyone agreed that they value the social contact with other organic gardeners and the opportunities to share problems and solutions related to issues arising from their own growing. A few members are also keen to spread the word on the benefits of organic gardening to a wider audience beyond the group – outreach work.

Following discussion it was agreed to pursue both strands, meetings and outreach, with existing members identifying the strands in which they wanted to participate. It was agreed that the meeting programme for next year will include three social meetings at people’s gardens plus a visit and a couple of evening talks. A few members will take forward the outreach work which will comprise the monthly Growers’ Market on the second Saturday of the month and, hopefully, a children’s gardening group in the Wynd Community Garden.

The group discussed whether they should change the name from GIYO, as this is a little obscure. Alternatives discussed included LOG (Letchworth Organic Gardeners) or N-HOG (North Herts Organic Gardeners). Other Garden Organic local groups have similar acronyms eg NOG ( Norfolk Organic Gardeners).  Views are welcomed on this.

Currently GIYO have a Facebook page which has regular posts but it is not used by many group members. Non members visit it and ‘like it’ sometimes. It was agreed Diane would maintain this page, but it was felt that investing in other social media, such as Instagram, was unlikely to yield new members. Email will continue as the main communication mechanism. The group will consider posting a monthly Blog on the TTL website.

The April Spring Talk will take place on April 27th 2019 2pm – 5pm, Geoff Hodge will talk about either Soil or Pests and Diseases. Please could you make your preference known.

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