URBAN ATHLETE KATHY FISH


I guess I have a love for gardening in my blood – my parents have always been avid gardeners. Being a civil engineer, my dad had us moving around the country every few years and each new house brought another garden to be planted; and this my dad did with such joy, even planting veggies and spreading packets of spring seeds on unused plots next door to ours.

My husband, Gavin and I moved to Noordhoek in 1995 and have always felt so privileged to live in such a beautiful part of South Africa. Living in this bit of paradise; I was however struck how unkempt the road verges were and thus began the “On the Verge” project in Nov 2009.

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My “On the Verge” story

My husband, Gavin and I moved to Noordhoek in 1995 and have always felt so privileged to live in such a beautiful part of South Africa. Living in this bit of paradise; I was however struck how unkempt the road verges were and thus began the “On the Verge” project in Nov 2009.

The idea was for the community to support a few gardeners to plant trees and gardens along the neglected verges of Noordhoek. Initially it was just me, my gardener and my old rusty trailer, but now 7 years later our team has grown to six. My 2 crazy friends, Nisan Bloch and Angela Torrente, help me with the day to day running of the team. We garden every Wednesday come rain or shine and our road-side boards now not only have a telephone number, but also a face book page that is updated each week with our latest gardening exploits. Over the past 2 years, we have organised an Open Gardens event in Noordhoek and the funds raised from these wonderfully successful events have enabled us to replace my old crock trailer with a beautiful new water bowzer carrying trailer and many much needed new tools.

We have over the years planted over 100 trees and planted 23 verge gardens. We also work closely with the riding fraternity, helping to clear bridle paths around Noordhoek. The community has been wonderfully supportive with both businesses and private families also donate money towards the weekly salaries of the guys. Nurseries have donated plants, residents have helped to water. Horse manure, mulch and compost are donated and every now and then, there is an anonymous gift of plants and cuttings left outside my gate. The goodwill of people is definitely the reason why we continue to garden the verges year after year.

Part of the “On the Verge” dream is to open up paths and beautify public open spaces, so that all of Noordhoek can benefit from these often, hidden, neglected and overgrown areas.

There is something particularly satisfying about doing something for no reason other than just bringing beauty and joy to others. Gardening is an easy way to pass on God’s blessing and ‘pay it forward’.
Keep Going Cathy!ce. The aim is to carry on doing crazy, unique things in order to make this charity sustainable.”

Keep Going Kathy!


URBAN ATHLETES