Growing as a community

Ward councillor Fabian Ah-Sing and Scherlize van der Merwe will be creating the organic garden in Ysterplaat

A vegetable garden is being started at a municipal park in Ysterplaat.

Ward councillor Fabian Ah-Sing said the Church Street Park, on the corner of Church and Da Gama streets in Ysterplaat, had been a dumping ground until 2016 when an outdoor gym and multi-purpose sports area were built there.

The organic food garden would be established next to those facilities and would be managed by a nearby church, he said.

Residents were welcome to take foods out of the garden if they helped keep the area clean and “put in effort” to plant fruits and vegetables there, he said.

“The area is fenced in and a gate has been put up to prevent vandalism and damage to the space. All of this comes out of the councillor’s ward allocation budget.”

Church pastor Scherlize van der Merwe said she was happy to work with the community, and creating an organic garden would bring people together and hopefully keep youth off the streets.

She said the garden needed compost and she had started raising funds for watering cans.

Justin Kumlehn, the chairman of the Brooklyn, Ysterplaat and Rugby Residents’ Association (BYRRA), said the association supported the plan as it would create community cohesion.

“The community in conjunction with the church should take ownership and guard this amazing project,” he said.

Mr Kumlehn said he hoped to see more open spaces around Brooklyn, Ysterplaat and Rugby being beautified and residents “taking back their area”.

He said some residents had started planting flowers in Koala Street ahead of spring and he encouraged others to do the same.

If you would like to be part of the projects and donate any gardening materials, email Ms Van der Merwe at or

Church Street Park is on the corner of Church and Da Gama streets, in Ysterplaat.