In Our Street FAQs.
In Our Street is a framework which brings together neighbours to work on building sustainable, connected communities. Neighbours meet, set small achievable goals, and work towards environmental projects together.
We have created a range of resources to help you along the way. These include:
- Street Champions Handbook (Street Champions are legends who lead their streets in projects).
- Street Champions Templates – download this for the nitty gritty of the resources.
- 2 Examples – one about increasing biodiversity and native greenery and another about diverting food waste from landfill.
- 4 helpful videos, including an introduction to In Our Street and 3 examples of Street Champions and their projects.
- Examples of other Street Champions. Check out these inspiring folk and their projects here.
Anyone, anywhere. Passionate about people or the planet? Nostalgic about the good ol’ days when neighbours shared cups of sugar? Then In Our Street is for you. Projects can be as little or big as you dream them to be.
Street Champions are people* who lead their Streets in undertaking environmental projects. The projects are usually a great team effort, but it can help to have a front person, someone to print off the resources, do the letterboxing, organise the meetings etc.
Perhaps you co-lead with someone else. Perhaps you print off some of the resources and share the load evenly between your group.
It’s totally up to you.
Also, importantly, you don’t have to create The World’s Best Community Garden to qualify as a Street Champion. Maybe you get yourself and a few neighbours set up with a kitchen caddy to cut down food waste. That’s amazing! You’re all Street Champions in our eyes.
Absolutely. Some of the resources (like grant suggestions) are tailored to the Port Adelaide or Greater Adelaide region. However, many of the resources (like letter templates for reaching out to your neighbours) can be used by anyone, anywhere. If you live more locally, we may be able to provide a little more support, however we encourage everyone to participate and would love to hear about your project, from wherever you are in the world.
Our resources are free for anyone to use. Depending on the nature of your project, there may be some small costs involved. There are a few options for how to navigate these costs:
- Apply for a grant (we have included a list of some of the suitable grants in Greater Adelaide in our handbook, but checking out the grants that your local council offers is a great place to start).
- Contact your local council. They sometimes offer incentives or programs to help people do a range of things, including reduce waste. They might provide or subsidise a compost bin (if it’s food waste that tickles your fancy) or some compost and plants (if it’s greening that floats your boat).
- If the costs are very minor, you could split them amongst yourself and your neighbours.
- Check out your local buy-nothing page. Don’t know what a buy-nothing page is? You can read more about them here. If you’re after a worm farm, compost bin, veggie beds or the like, this can be a great place to score an epic free item.
Check out our handy resources here. You’re welcome to use our templates to get the ball rolling, or strike up a chat with your neighbours yourself. Already connected with your neighbours? Perfect. Why not plan a get-together soon to chat through a vision for your street and some goals and project ideas. Think a nice outdoor park, someone’s front or back yard, maybe even a meeting room at your local library? Perhaps a bring-and-share?
Yes! The In Our Street Framework is designed to be flexible. While it is important to share the load between neighbours, we do understand that life gets really busy and things pop up. You can chip away at your project at a pace that suits you.
Projects don’t need to be long-winded, or complicated or big. Like we said re: The World’s Best Community Garden, start where you feel comfortable.
In the words of a great Street Champion, “Knowing that together, we are making a difference – no matter how small – has brought us all much satisfaction and joy.”
Plus, it can help to get plenty of people involved. That way when some people need to take a little time off, there’s always a group of people available to get the job done. Someone wise once said “many hands make light work”.
By all means! Living in an unconventional street could mean that finding that share-a-cup-of-sugar neighbourly feeling is a little tougher. This can be the perfect way to foster a sense of neighbourliness in your community.
Check out Julie’s video, about how she lives in an apartment block and missed the ‘neighbourhood feeling’ she had growing up. She now meets with her neighbours monthly. They’ve set up a Little Library and are now working on establishing some communal herb gardens near the local café. Next, they’ll tackle greening their local walkway. The world is their oyster, and no atypical housing arrangements will get in their way.
The Growing Together Project was a pilot project that launched in July 2022, with support from the City of Port Adelaide Enfield.
It’s an example of an In Our Street project, where the goal has been set for you. The goal – to increase tree canopy and native biodiversity in your street.
A few great people (Street Champions) put their hands up to rally their neighbours around increasing urban tree canopy.
The City of PAE provided a variety of trees for people to plant in their gardens, and the people matched this with a contribution of native understory plants. Together with their neighbours, the people planted 13 trees and 50+ native understory tube stock plants.
Would you like to be involved and live in the City of Port Adelaide Enfield? Keep your eyes peeled as we head into the next planting season (Autumn/Winter), as we may run this project again.
A thousand times yes! That’s the BIG idea. If you already know your neighbours, wonderful! Sadly a lot of us don’t. A National ‘Australia Talks’ Survey conducted in 2021 found that about 40% of us don’t know many of our neighbours by name. That’s especially true for people aged 18-29.
If straight-up door-knocking sounds a little too daunting, we’ve got the perfect solution. A little hello-neighbour letter template to break the ice. You can find it in our handbook or templates.
Not all projects are permanent fixtures. Some of them, like Adam’s Bread Tags for Wheelchairs project, or Patrick and Kate’s Community Recycling Drop-off Station are really quite transportable.
If you do set up a semi-permanent project, like a verge or community garden, then wow! What a glorious gift that you’ve given your community!
Street Champion Christine did exactly that when she was renting, helping to transform the verges on the street. Now she’s created some beautiful friendships and the butterfly-garden-verge is a wonderful reminder of her efforts every time she pays them a visit.
Check out this great story about Street Champion Brooklyn, who has transformed their rental garden and helped create a community garden at the end of their street.
Not all projects have a single front person / Street Champion. The role can be shared between a few, if you like.
If you’ve discovered In Our Street but don’t think you’re ready to be the sole fearless leader, that’s ok because:
- You don’t need to be fearless to participate in In Our Street
- There are plenty of other ways to structure a project
If you do know someone who might be an excellent Street Champion, why not have a chat with them? Or perhaps use the resources to tee up a gathering, and then see if someone else would like to step up to the role.
This one really depends on your project and where you are located.
The best way to find out is to get in touch with us.
Either email email@example.com or pop by for a visit during our opening hours.
27 North Parade, Port Adelaide 5015. Wed-Fri from 10am – 3pm (and the second Sunday of each month, from 10am – 2pm).
The bottom line is, do what works for you. We do REALLY recommend trying to create a ‘vision’ for your street though. It helps to get everyone inspired and if you’re ever unsure about the direction your project is going in, you can always come back to your vision.
Ask yourselves, does this align with the vision for our street we collectively agreed upon?
Projects that focus on caring for, restoring, and regenerating our beautiful environment – that’s the aim of the game. These kinds of projects will almost certainly have huge community and social benefits too.
Street Champions often talk about how beneficial the projects are for their physical and mental health. They help people feel less isolated and get them active in nature.
Street Champion Kerry says, “Greening these patches opens up knowledge and skills in the community that can be shared. There may be a weed expert, someone with native plant knowledge, an avid propagator, a historian, an artist to paint stobie poles, someone with strong mosaic knowledge, a herb expert and so much more already in the community. These small groups can give opportunity for those skills to shine, share and develop.”