For over 20 years Urban Seed has been gathering around food, recreation and creative art to foster a sense of home – especially for those of us experiencing homelessness, addiction, mental illness and isolation. This gathering is the foundation of our unique community development approach, where we seek to draw out the gifts, skills and potential of all involved.
Urban Seed was birthed in the early 1990s, when church-goers at Collins Street Baptist Church were literally stepping over people sleeping rough. Three young people moved into the church and met people living on the streets, creating belonging by sharing meals. Today, this commitment to creating home for those who have none is the basis of our community development work. People are not seen as ‘problems’ but rather gifted individuals who, like everyone, need support to reach their potential.
We believe that good community development is possible when people from all economic and cultural backgrounds get together and support one another. Whether it’s by cooking together, eating together, singing together or playing cricket together, we foster spaces for people to develop transformative relationships with each other.
Urban Seed’s work is incarnational – meaning that small groups of Urban Seed Residents eat, sleep and play within the contexts that they work. We combine this non-professionalised missional approach with the work of specialist community development practitioners.
Urban Seed prioritises dynamic projects run for and by locals in the Melbourne CBD, Norlane (Geelong) and St Albans. We are currently getting to know the neighbourhood of Wangaratta, to see if there are any possibilities for working together. Through our Schools, Faith and Corporate engagement programs, we engage with others in the community to respond to the needs and strengths in their own contexts.
Urban Seed’s ultimate vision is for communities of hope, healing, and justice. Through our Reconciliation Action Plan, we are committed to working towards hope, healing and justice for our Indigenous sisters and brothers as well.