Many of us might assume that spreading manure might be one accusation that politicians would want to avoid, but for the Green Party’s Clare Bailey, it’s something she’s happy to promote.
The MLA candidate for South Belfast has found a novel way of raising funds for the upcoming May elections, raffling off 20 bags of well-rotted horse manure for use in gardens and allotments.
Ms Bailey stated that the idea comes as a result of the Green Party’s strict policy against corporate donations:
“As a party we rely solely on individual donations, member support and fundraising initiatives, and believe in full transparency on the issue. But we don’t mind getting our hands dirty so long as our politics remains clean.”
Ms Bailey is a vocal supporter of public and community agriculture projects and feels that more needs to be done to assist those who want to grow their own food, be they individuals or organised groups, adding:
“The Green Party recognises the vital role that allotments have to play, particularly in maximising the potential for urban food growing. We need to work to cut waiting lists where demand for allotment plots is high, and promote land share and garden schemes where housing estates are being redeveloped or newly built.”
Ms Bailey’s statement comes on the day that the Green Party in Northern Ireland threw its full support behind the Big Lunch. The initiative, organised by the team behind the Eden project, aims to get as many people as possible across the country getting together with neighbours for lunch on or around the 5th June, helping to strengthen community relationships.
Ms Bailey confirmed that The Green Party will be holding a number of events in association with the Big Lunch;
“We have an event booked in the Oremau Rd area that will celebrate the very best in local produce and local traders, and will be open to all residents on either side of the bridge. We also have events planned in East Belfast and Castlereagh.”
“We are also immensely pleased that Queen’s University and the residents of the Holylands have launched their Big Lunch plans. It is a positive step from both the students and residents to further improve relationships in the area, and shows a commitment to doing so outside of the contentious St Patrick Day celebrations. It is essential that a sense of community and social responsibility is on the agenda all year round if things are going to continue to improve.”