Volunteer Harvest Reward


The Volunteer Harvest Reward

The “Volunteer Harvest Reward” is produce grown in the Communal Garden and given to gardeners in return for their volunteer hours.

The “Volunteer Harvest Reward” is an inadequate way of thanking volunteers for their efforts… we know that.

Furthermore, we know that we have no adequate way of thanking our volunteers.

However, we also believe that our volunteers understand all of that… which makes them even more precious.

Now, if you’ve stayed with this so far … here’s the Volunteer Harvest Reward in practice … tabs, please:

How does it work?

Easy.
Volunteer in the garden.
Record your volunteer hours in the Volunteer Log Book.
After 5 hours of recorded volunteer time — every additional hour qualifies for 454gm / 1Lb of Communal Garden produce. *
Volunteer Harvest Rewards — are collected at Tuesdays evening or Saturday afternoon Work Parties.
Consume.
Appreciate.
Easy.

* Unless you are a Remittance Gardener [ see Technical Details tab ]

Technical Details

Who can qualify for Volunteer Harvest Rewards?

  1. Rental Gardeners — who have committed to 5 hours of volunteering
  2. Remittance Gardeners — who have opted to make a remittance payment in lieu of “volunteering”
  3. Pure Volunteers — volunteers without a bed in the Rental Garden

How are they earned?

Volunteer Harvest Rewards are earned with volunteer hours recorded in the Volunteer Log Book and delivered in “unit weight” of Communal Garden produce.

What is a “unit weight”

A “unit weight” is 0.454Kg (or 1 Lb) of Communal Garden produce and is considered equivalent to 1 hour of Volunteer Time.

Example: Rental Gardener — committed to 5 hours of volunteer time

• > Total Volunteer Hours recorded minus Total Unit Weight collected must be greater than or equal to 5

5 hours recorded – 0.0Kg produce collected = Ok
5 hours recorded – 0.454Kg produce collected = Not Ok
6 hours recorded – 0.454Kg produce collected = Ok

Example: Remittance Gardener — paid a $75 remittance fee

• > Total Volunteer Hours recorded minus Total Unit Weight collected must be greater than or equal to 0

1 hour recorded – 0.454Kg produce collected = Ok
1 hour recorded – 0.908Kg produce collected = Not Ok

Note: A Remittance Gardener has “in effect” already “recorded” 5 hours of volunteer time.

Example: Pure Volunteer — same criteria as Rental Gardener

• > Total Volunteer Hours recorded minus Total Unit Weight collected must be greater than or equal to 5

5 hours recorded – 0.0Kg produce collected = Ok
5 hours recorded – 0.454Kg produce collected = Not Ok
6 hours recorded – 0.454Kg produce collected = Ok

Volunteer Harvest Rewards can ONLY be collected during Volunteer Work Parties.

A Short History

The Inglewood Community Garden (ICG) was established in 2003 when the Victoria Park Community Garden relocated.

In 2007 the ICG took on the parcel of land which is now known as the “Communal Garden.”

Originally this part of the garden was called “Cornucopia” and was managed by a cadre of of rental gardeners who began the idea of the “volunteer harvest reward” to incentivise the necessary (volunteering) efforts to maintain it.

Circa 2010 — 2011, concurrent with the move to integrate Cornucopia and the Rental Garden, the former was renamed the “Communal Garden” and in keeping with our Mission Statement:

“To provide an organic garden to cultivate plants, build community and share our resources.”

… repurposed to focus upon growing and donating produce to local community service organizations, such as, for example, Sheriff King, Servants Anonymous, Discovery House, the Alex Community Kitchen, Alice Bissett House and the Calgary Dream Centre.

The linchpin in being able to repurpose the Communal Garden, as described above, has been the addition of “planting, tending and harvesting of the Communal Garden” as the (more or less) “default” volunteer option required to rent a bed in the ICG Rental Garden.

However, it only seemed fair to continue the idea of a Volunteer Harvest Reward to provide some kind of inducement and ‘acknowledgement’ for our volunteers’ efforts.

Over the Top?

The concept of the Volunteer Harvest Rewald has long since superseded whatever ‘motivational’ inspiration it was initially designed to effect … after all, it would be pretty difficult to support the notion that one hour (let alone 5 + 1 hours) of your time is worth 454gm or 1Lb of produce … and by that I mean that your time is worth more.

But, I will state the obvious and say that not everyone in our community has our volunteers’ time, energy, skills, talents or resources … the Volunteer Harvest Reward is, in a way, an act of communion (but not in the religious sense), in that, volunteers who partake of the produce from the Inglewood Community Garden share in the benefit their time and energy and commitment bring to the community at large.

So … thanks.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯ … that’s all I’ve got.