Swarms and Lemons: The Makings of Awesome Communities

August 22, 2012

July was an especially awesome month for the Melbourne Awesome Foundation. We were able to give not one, but two awesome projects something to get excited about.

Swarm, Australia’s only online community management conference asked us to pick an awesome community project to give a free weekend pass to participate and be featured in what will no doubt be one awesome conference for community managers from all over Australia on the 13-14 September. The conference is made by community managers, for community managers, and mixes practical tips with provocative big picture thinking. It’s a transdisciplinary event, with contributors from a diverse range of industries and academia. It’s a peer support community, intended to give community managers in Australia a voice, and facilitate dynamic professional development. (If this sounds like something you’d like to attend you can register here)

We had a large number of community applications to choose from and only managed to find one lemon in the bunch, The Lemon Tree Project. The Lemon Tree Project is about creating a place in every street for neighbors to congregate and share. Their vision is to get a communal lemon tree and a park bench in as many streets and reserves around the world as possible. Awesome, I know!

Did you know one lemon tree could provide enough fruit to serve a street full of people? So why not share a tree with your neighbors? I mean, how many people who have a lemon tree use all of the lemons themselves? Not many!

Through their website www.thelemontreeproject.com they are sharing all sorts of lemon recipes (for cooking & cleaning), information about tree care and maintenance as well as inspiring fruit tree stories from all over the world to engage the community in their awesome project.

“We strongly believe that together we can change the world, one street at a time. This whole thing started out as a simple idea that might inspire people to garden and to grow their own food. Already, The Lemon Tree Project seems to have struck a real chord with people and I think the key to it is in its simplicity. “ said Lemon Tree Project Founder, Jodi Jackson

We’re not the only ones who find this project incredibly awesome, “The Lemon Tree Project is devoted to building resilient communities, which is in perfect harmony with swarm. Our mission is to empower those who empower communities, via peer support and exchange. Sustainable communities aren’t just powerful pathways for engagement. They teach us to work and live together, and let us discover new aspects of ourselves. Growing and gathering are a brilliant foundation for lasting change – The Lemon Tree is onto something! We can’t wait to hear their story and plans for lemonade at swarm”. said Swarm Conference Co-Founder, Venessa Paech.

The Melbourne Awesome Foundation gives two big thumbs up to The Lemon Tree Project and Swarm Conference for bringing communities together in awesome ways!