Kitchen Garden program

The ANU Kitchen Garden program is an ANU Thrive initiative, in collaboration with the Stephanie Alexander's Kitchen Garden Foundation and made possible through the ACT Health Promotion Grants Program.

Who are we?

The ANU Thrive Kitchen Garden is a growing community of ANU students and staff working together cooperatively to grow, prepare and share fresh, seasonal and delicious food. All ANU students and staff are welcome to join in our weekly Kitchen Garden sessions and special events.

You don't need to be a master chef or have a green thumb, the Kitchen Garden is a place of learning and sharing experiences, knowledge and skills. Most importantly, the Kitchen Garden is a state of mind - it's about ANU people connecting as a community and connecting with nature through the inspiration and enjoyment of locally and cooperatively grown and prepared fresh food. Gardening bee participants share in the bounty of the seasonal harvest.

There are two Kitchen Garden sessions each week and it's easy to get involved. You don't need to attend every week, just come along when you can.

Kitchen Garden Sessions Semester 1, 2023

The Plot

Mondays 10am - 12pm (except Public Holidays) between Week 1 (20th February) and Week 11 (22nd May).

The Plot is located between Fenner Hall and College of Business and Economics, near Sullivan's Creek, in the middle of Acton campus.

Kitchen Garden sessions at The Plot include working in the garden together and preparing and sharing a snack including fresh garden produce.

Heritage Environment Centre Garden

Wednesday 4pm - 6pm (except Public Holidays) between Week 1 (20th February) and Week 6 (3rd April).

The Heritage Environment Centre Garden is located near the roundabout at the intersection of Lennox Crossing and Lawson Crescent (near the National Museum of Australia).

Both Plot and Heritage EC Garden regular gardening sessions include a mini-workshop on an element of growing food and discussion of food preparation ideas, skills and knowledge.

Watch this page for updated events including cooking classes and communal lunches in Semester 1, 2023.

Why a Kitchen Garden Program?

The Kitchen Garden is a cooperative community for all ANU students and staff, bringing us together to share connection with nature, each other and to enjoy fresh, healthy food.

Young people report high levels of loneliness, disconnection from nature and work/study-related stress. As well, young people have some of the lowest self-reported fruit and vegetable intakes across all age groups and can struggle to access affordable, healthy, fresh food. Healthy eating, access to natural environments and working together in community all contribute to improved physical and mental wellbeing.

The Kitchen Garden program offers ANU students and staff the chance to:

  • work creatively and cooperatively, sharing skills, knowledge and experience and learning together;
  • build confidence to nurture and grow food and to prepare fresh, healthy, seasonal meals;
  • create connections and networks with students and staff, in a safe, respective, and inclusive space - the Kitchen Garden community;
  • develop and build on skills and capabilities beyond academic learning;
  • engage in volunteer work and contribute to the local community and share a sense of purpose with others.

Each session is led by students working with and under the direction and supervision of the Kitchen Garden Program Coordinator to help students build capacity and skills to lead sessions.

How can I get involved?

As a participant

Anyone in the ANU community - students and staff- is welcome to come along to our regular sessions or events AND you really don't have to be a master chef or a green thumb gardener to attend! There's no ongoing commitment required: come once a Semester or every week, it's up to you! Participants can attend as many or as few regular sessions as they would like.

Registrations are essential for ALL regular sessions and other events. Registrations must be made through our Eventbrite page (link to Eventbrite page) and can be completed up to one hour after the session or event begins.

As a volunteer

The Kitchen Garden thrives because of our committed and enthusiastic team of student and staff volunteers. Volunteering is fun and a great way to meet and work with other like-minded members of the ANU community.

Volunteers are supported with regular, ongoing on-the-job training in either garden or kitchen related skills knowledge and mentoring and are supervised by the Kitchen Garden Program Coordinator. You don't need to be a cooking or gardening expert - we'll give you training and support!

Volunteers and the opportunity to be part of the planning and creative development of the Kitchen Garden program and the gardens.

Volunteers are asked to make a regular commitment to one 2-hour Kitchen Garden session per fortnight (this is flexible depending on the needs of the volunteer and can be changed as circumstances change) between weeks 3 and 11 of Semester - a total of approximately 4 sessions.

Find out more

Keep an eye on our Upcoming Events, as well as our the ANU Thrive Facebook page and Kitchen Garden Facebook Group for regular session dates and times and other upcoming events.

If you've got any questions, please contact ANU Thrive at


 The Kitchen Garden program is funded by the ACT Health Promotion Grants Program

Page owner: Wellbeing