Volunteer Recognition Event

On Friday 15th of  June RECAP was well represented at the wonderful Volunteer Recognition Awards held in Palmerston North at the Conference and Function Centre. RECAP had nominated Phil Stevens for an award as part of years of volunteering, not just for RECAP but in the wider community and also at national level with his work for Living Economies.   The event was hosted by the Volunteer Resource Centre in Palmerston North and there were a large number of people from all over the region and from many different sectors in society.

Phil Stevens has been on the RECAP executive board for many years and also volunteering as a tutor, working in the orchard, with IT, pruning, planting trees, the community garden and leading the work on our cob seating.
Phil also volunteers outside of RECAP. For years he regularly helped check the stoat traps in the Manawatu Gorge. He's currently Treasurer of LEAP -- the Society for the Local Economy of Ashhurst and Pohangina Inc. He also organises musicians for LEAP's monthly Ashhurst Community Market. In 2010, he joined the board of the national charity Living Economies Educational Trust, becoming Chairperson the following year. This role involves traveling throughout New Zealand to speak, facilitate, and co-organise conferences. This year he has been meeting with staff from the Ministry of Social Development about an initiative to support those who wish to address debt and poverty through mutual reliance in small social networks.

Outside of his formal volunteering, Phil is always willing to support a friend in the hospital, sort out someone's computer, or share his skills with tree pruning, with particular readiness to help those who are socially vulnerable. He's known both for the intelligence he brings to his volunteering, and for the practical and consistent expression of his compassion.

A huge thank you to Phil from all of us and I am sure from many, many others who has been lucky enough to benefit from his volunteering.

Reflecting on the Edge of Sustainability, 17 June 2018

Do you love the earth but get overwhelmed by the amount of bad news about the environment?

Do you have a desire to feel more connected—to yourself, to your community, to the earth?

Do you yearn to be engaged in earth-positive activities while staying grounded in self-care and your daily life?

Join Sharon Stevens and Helen Lehndorf for a day of journaling, discussion and art therapy acitivities focusing on the definition of 'sustainabiliy' and the possibilities for making the next step towards sustainability and wholeness.

Light Kai will be provided

Workshop is limited to 24 participants at $25 for the day, 9.30am - 3pm

Click here to Register

About the faciliators

Helen Lehndorf is a writer and writing teacher. Her book 'The Comforter' made the New Zealand Listener's 'Best 100 Books of 2012 and her poem 'Wabi-sabi' was selected for Best New Zealand Poems in 2011. Her second book, about the practice of journaling, 'Write to the Centre' was published by Haunui Press in 2016. Her essay 'The Sensory Seeker' appeared in Massey University's 2017 anthology 'Home'. She loves permaculture, gardening, wild foraging and helping people access their innate creativity.

Sharon Stevens (PhD, Rhetoric, Writing, and the Teaching of English) has been facilitating a combination of writing, permaculture design courses, and eco-lifestyle workshops since 1997. She has received multiple teaching awards. Her publications include A Place for Dialogue (University of Iowa Press, 2007) and more recent publications in Organic NZ, Permaculture Magazine, Ecosystem Services Journal, and Ecological Entanglements in the Anthropocene. She loves writing, learning with her workshop participants, and pottering in her expansive herb garden. She loves her family, too, and the place where she lives.

This workshop is suitable for attending as a stand-alone (one-off) workshop. It is the first in a four-part series that Helen and Sharon are offering as part of the Mandala Initiative.

Sour Dough Bread Making Workshops

After lots of interest and requests we are excited to be offering two sour dough workshops in May!   

Both will be held on May 19th, in Ashhurst and are 4 hours long.  (We will make sure you get a cuppa and a biscuit break though.)

We are lucky to have Renee returning again, after the success of the fermenting workshop last year.   The workshop will be hands-on and you will get to go home with a starter to make your own at home, some fresh bread and a whole lot of inspiration!

Workshops are limited to 20 participants each, cost $10 per person and you can register  below.

Morning workshop - 8.30am-12.30pm, May 19th here

Afternoon workshop - 1.00pm-5.00pm, May 19th here

Reel Earth film- Living The Change. May 3rd 2018

We are pleased to be presenting "Living The Change" as part of the Reel Earth Film Festival this year.

"Living The Change: Inspiring Stories for a Sustainable Future" explores solutions to the global crises we face today – solutions any one of us can be part of – through the inspiring stories of people pioneering change in their own lives and in their communities in order to live in a sustainable and regenerative way.

Directors Jordan Osmond and Antoinette Wilson have brought together stories from their travels around New Zealand, along with interviews with experts able to explain how we come to be where we are today. From forest gardens to composting toilets, community supported agriculture to timebanking, Living the Change offers ways we can rethink our approach to how we live.

Local Permaculturists are featured in this film and will be speaking and answering questions afterwards!

Thursday May 3rd, 7.00pm. St Mary Magdalene Church Hall, Cambridge Ave, Ashhurst

This film is a free event but please register on EventFinda here

RetroSuburbia - A Permaculture Talk


You are invited to come and hear Nelson Lebo talk about an exciting new book based on Permaculture Principles - RetroSuburbia.   David Holmgren, the author, is one of Permaculture's co-creators and in this book he shows you how to downshift and retrofit your home, garden, community and self so you can be more organised, resilient and sustainable. 

Nelson Lebo is a keen and experienced retro-fitter who is Palmerston North City Council's Eco Advisor.

The talk is on Thursday April 12th at 7.30pm.  

St Mary Magdalene Church Hall, Cambridge Ave, Ashhurst.

All welcome. Supper served, koha appreciated.  

Queries please contact jane@recap.org.nz

Seed Swap & Screening of Seed:The untold story 13 Nov, 6.30pm

Bring your seeds, seedlings, cuttings and anything else that you would like to share to our Seed Swap, followed by a screening of the award-winning movie "Seed: the Untold Story". All seed leftovers will be donated to the Feilding Seed bank.

Venue: Anglican Church Hall , Cambridge Street

6:30pm 13 November 2018

Entry by Koha

Small herb gardens for wellness, 3 November, 2pm - 4.30pm

Are you interested in developing a small herb garden to enhance your sense of well-being? Would you like a few tips on how to get started in ways that support long-term success? Are you interested in sharing the afternoon with others who would rather think of their plants as friends than as "garden tasks"? If so, you might enjoy this beginner's workshop on herb garden design.


At an introductory level, this workshop will address:

  • Some of the health benefits of gardening—even when "vigorous exercise" is not on the list;

  • Where you might want to locate a herb garden, and how you might want to design its structure and shape, considering lifestyle, sunlight, soil, ergonomics, and upkeep;

  • Some standard designs for small spaces, such as container gardens and herb spirals;

  • Working with plants and their nature—both the plants you choose, and the ones that choose you ("weeds");

  • Harvest and use, including some tips for herbal health (suitable for amateurs).

The workshop includes a tour of five mini herb gardens (all part of one large garden). There will be a combination of both common and specialty plants available at the workshop (koha requested).

Please note that this location is not fully wheelchair accessible. If you have questions about accommodations for your abilities, please make a booking to temporarily reserve your space, then make an immediate inquiry before paying your fee.


Participant numbers are strictly limited, and enrolments are not confirmed until payment is received.


Depending on numbers a morning session will also be run, to register you interest in this please email, info@recap.org.nz


To Register for the Afternoon event click here.



Sourdough workshop

Due to a long waiting list, continued interest and continued requests we are excited to be offering two more  sourdough workshops in September!   

Both will be held on the 29th September, in Ashhurst for 3 hours. 

We are lucky to have Renee returning and she will be joined by Kushla. The workshop will be hands-on and you will get to go home with a starter to make your own at home, some fresh bread and a whole lot of inspiration!

Workshops are limited to 20 participants each session, and cost $10 unwaged and $15 Waged per person.

You can register for the morning session, (9am-12pm) here

and for the afternoon session, (1pm-3pm) here


Annual General Meeting - you are invited

RECAP would like to invite you to our Annual General Meeting at 7.00pm, June 6th 2018.

All are welcome to attend and celebrate the year with us, while we review our successes, elect our board for the coming year, share photos and have supper.

Please RSVP to Jane -  jane@recap.org.nz

The AGM will be held at the Village Valley Centre, Guildford St, Ashhurst.


Community Supported Agriculture FREE talk & seed swap - June 28th 2018

You are invited to join us for an informative evening with the founders of Wairarapa Eco Farm, a thriving organic farm in Masterton. We will also be having a seed swap. so bring along your favourite, labelled seeds. WEF is a local example of a successful, working CSA model.

CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. The CSA model for farming is also referred to as subscription farming or farm shares. In this model members subscribe a season’s worth of vegetables, sharing both the risks and bounty of agriculture. You place your food dollar directly in the hands of a local family farm and in exchange receive a share of fresh, organically grown vegetables each week.

The history is an inspiring one of bare, unproductive land turned into a rich oasis, you can read more about this on the WEF website here or even better come along to our free evening talk on June 28th in Ashhurst.

Wairarapa Eco Farm delivers to pick-up points throughout Wellington, Upper Hutt, Lower Hutt, in Palmerston North, and throughout the Wairarapa.

June 28th 7.00pm. St Mary Magdalene Church Hall. All welcome, free event, just turn up, supper served and koha appreciated.   ****Remember your seeds for swapping**