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Digging for Victory at Parliament

Published date: 14 May 2019

The Speaker’s Lawn has two veggie gardens thanks to the Garden to Table initiative.

Children standing around the Speaker's lawn Enlarge image

Young students learned about the Dig for Victory campaign released during World War II, which reignited vegetable gardening in New Zealand.

Source: Parliamentary Service

Donning his gumboots, Mr Speaker said a few words before primary school children from seven schools across Wellington got to work planting a variety of vegetables in two freshly dug veggie patches.

National food education charity, Garden to Table, released a ‘Dig for Victory’ resource as part of ANZAC Day studies. It teaches young students about the Dig for Victory campaign released during World War II, which reignited vegetable gardening in New Zealand. At the time rationing was put in place across the country as many food products were shipped directly to troops. The Dig for Victory campaign encouraged people to grow their own vegetables to be more self-sufficient.

Garden to Table programme coordinator Victoria Bernard says the aim of planting at Parliament is to show the general public that if school children can grow vegetables at Parliament, they can be grown by anyone, anywhere. On a larger scale, Victoria hopes Dig for Victory will act metaphorically in tackling wider spread issues. “We think that Dig for Victory can cover any battle – whether it’s for climate change, obesity nutrition, mental health, we think it can have an impact. We’re encouraging people to take on their own battle and ‘Dig for Victory’.”

Garden to Table was developed on the belief that if kids can grow, harvest, prepare and share vegetables at school, then they’re set up with skills for life. The garden will be cared for through this process over the coming months until it’s ready for harvest.

A sign and display next to a vegetable patch Enlarge image

Garden to Table was developed on the belief that if kids can grow, harvest, prepare and share vegetables at school, then they’re set up with skills for life.

Source: Parliamentary Service