Facebook announces partnership with community charity Groundwork

Company: Facebook & Groundwork

For the first time, a social media company will be sponsoring a garden at this year's RHS Chelsea Flower Show.

Facebook’s garden – Beyond the Screen – will be built with, and for, young people. The garden will create a space to host important conversations with young people, influencers and experts about the ways people, especially young people, are using their time online – from its impact on their wellbeing, to how it is helping them connect with others and drive change in their communities offline.

Today, Facebook is announcing its partnership to build the garden with young ambassadors from Groundwork, a charity which works with young people in the most disadvantaged parts of the UK to transform lives in the communities around them, improve their prospects and to live and work in a greener way.

The volunteers from Groundwork will join landscape architect and designer, Joe Perkins, on trips around the country to source materials for the garden and will be involved in all stages of the project – from the construction of the garden with specialist contractor The Outdoor Room, to its re-homing in the local community once Show Week ends in May.

Facebook is working with Groundwork to engage young people directly in the garden build to give them a voice and celebrate the ways they come together online to create positive real-world change.

Graham Duxbury, Chief Executive, Groundwork, said:The young people we work with inspire us every day with their stories of social action, and we’re thrilled to be partnering with Facebook and Joe to give them a platform to showcase the important work they are doing in their communities. For our young volunteers who are helping to physically build the garden, this is an incredible opportunity for them to learn new skills in a prestigious setting.” 

Joe Perkins MSGD, Landscape Architect, said: “I feel incredibly lucky to have the opportunity to design a garden for the world’s most prestigious flower show together with Facebook. I've witnessed first-hand the positive impact of social media. Facebook and Instagram have helped me build my business, keep in touch with friends and family, and get inspiration from all over the world for my work. But as a dad, I am also aware of the challenges it can bring so I’m glad we’ll be using the Garden to host important conversations about screen time and well-being. I’m also delighted that we are involving Groundwork’s young ambassadors in its creation. I remember being an aspirational young gardener and it is a privilege to be able to involve young people who share my passion for green spaces in this project.”

Steve Hatch, VP Northern Europe, said:We’re delighted to be working with Groundwork and Joe to build our garden at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. It’s important to us that the time people spend on our platforms is positive and we hear countless stories each day of the ways young people follow their passion and use social media to create change in the real world. More than 1.5 million people in the UK are part of a gardening related group on Facebook and we want this garden to be a space to host important conversations about the connection between our online and offline lives.”

If you’d like to find out more, are planning any features around the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, or would like to speak to one of our spokespeople, please do get in touch with the team at any time on cfsfacebook@teneo.com

Joe will be documenting his journey to Chelsea Flower Show on Facebook and Instagram (@joeperkinsdesign) or you can visit his website – where he is giving behind the scenes access. You’ll be able to find Facebook’s garden – Beyond the Screen – near the entrance of the site, at RHW291.

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