Gro Zone's Stephen Cannon named Local Food Hero 2012
Steven Cannon has won an award for his outstanding contribution to a food-growing community initiative at the Gro-zone at the Energy Zone, Newfield Drive, Blackburn.
Stephen fought off all his competitors to be named North West Local Food Hero 2012. On Wednesday 12 December, he was presented with his award by Local Food. The Gro-zone project received a grant from Local Food in 2011 to maximise the development of a piece of land adjacent to the Energy Zone as a food growing area to be used to benefit the health and wellbeing of local people, by providing skills, training, awareness of healthy eating and support for food-related community enterprise.
Jemma Warburton, Project Coordinator at Community & Business Partners, which runs the project, nominated Stephen for an award in the summer, because of his fantastic contribution to the initiative, including his commitment, enthusiasm, and his influence on others.
Stephen, who has been volunteering on the project for over a year, spends 13 hours a week of his own time ensuring the smooth running of the project. He is a great help to the horticulture site manager, happy to carry out hard manual labour in all weathers, and assist and oversee other volunteers. A community ambassador, Stephen shares his skills and knowledge and encourages others to get involved in food growing. Stephen has constructed children's benches and herb boxes which are used in the Energy Zone Community Garden by the local community, disability groups and children. After vandals were on the site, he also worked tirelessly to prevent further attacks by improving security.