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Garden of Joy, Belgium

Artisan local products @permaculture project

About the project

A big thank you to all those who so far contributed to our crowdfunding campaign! Thanks to your support we managed to reach the minimum amount of 3500€!

Every additional contribution will help us to still reach our initial target amount of 5000€ (140%), so we can get a fully equiped production room operational.

If we dare to take the challenge of going for 7000€ (200%), we can also build a drying and storage room for the herbs we process for our artisan products.

If you prefer to donate offline, or are encountering problems with making an Ulule account or the payment procedure, send an email to [email protected], and we'll provide you a direct bankaccount number, in order to add your contribution to the campaign.

Summary: Garden of Joy is a non-profit farming project situated in Brakel, Belgium. We grow vegetables, fruits and herbs and make artisan products, which we would like to share and distribute locally through short chain channels such as food teams, local shops & markets. In doing so we contributre to the development of a more local economy and we reduce our ecological footprint. The goal of this fundraising campaign is to be able to fully equip a small production room and a drying and storage space for herbs, which have to meet very strict food hygiene and safety standards, in order to help our artisan and locally manufactured products find their way outside.

Garden of Joy project is meant to inspire and motivate people from around the world to grow closer to nature and to raise awareness about a more sustainable lifestyle. Inspired by permaculture principles we grow organic fruits, vegetables, berries and herbs on a small scale.

In three years time we step by step transformed bare soil into a lush and productive piece of land, applying elements of permaculture, no-dig methods and bio-intensive gardening to slowly restore the soil structure and re-establish the valuable soil life.

We produce natural soap, fruit rolls, herbal syrups and herbal tea in an artisan and traditional way. We aim to keep things simple and natural, mainly using ingredients that we can grow ourselves or obtain locally.

Till now, we managed to evolve at this point through donations, micro sales and a supportive community of enthusiastic volunteers.

In order to become self-sufficient and further develop this project in a sustainable way, we would like to share and distribute our localy manufactured, artisan products through short chain channels such as local shops, markets and food teams. In doing so, we can focus on what really matters: creating the change we would like to see in the world around us. We also aim to provide educational, social and cultural events and activities as soon as we manage to fully set up our farm in a productive and practical way, with special attention for inner development and self-knowledge.

What are the funds for?

We aim to become self-suficient in a sutainable way, by sharing and distributung our artisan products throug short chain sales. In doing so, we contribute to the development of a more local economy, build a stronger community and reduce our ecological foot print. This step requires a more professional and improved production process.

To reach this goal we need to set up:

  • a production room, fully equipped to meet strict hygiene and food safety standards
  • a drying and storage room for herbs, partially or fully empowered by alternative energy

​In order to keep our ecological footprint as small as possible, we aim to use sustainable, durable and preferably re-used materials and/or equipment. We try to develop a production process that minimizes the use of non-sustainable energy resources and materials.

To fully accomplish what we're aiming for, we would need 200% - around 7000€. However, we decided to put the target amount lower, in order to hopefully reach the minimum means needed to build and purchase the most necessary.

Every donation, big or small, will be much appreciated and used in the best possible way!

About the project owner

Garden of Joy started three years ago with a handful of people that had the desire to experiment with applying permaculture principles and permaculture design on a part of 1.4 hectares of bare, cultived land. Supported by friends and family, we managed to gather the means to get started with the most necessary. We planted trees and shrubs, hedges, fruit trees and berries, built a tunnel greenhouse, set up an irrigation system and started growing vegetables and herbs.

In an attempt to give proper use to the abundant yield of our blossoming project, we started producing herbal tea, herbal syrups, fruit leathers and natural soap in a simple and artisan way. These were received with such appreciation and enthousiasm by so many, that we decided to continue producing them and improve our production facilities.

Since 25th of July 2017 Garden of Joy has been registered as a non-profit association/vzw in Belgium. 

From the very start Ann Nagels and Aurel Porumb have put their shoulders under this promising project aiming to take it to a level of self-sufficiency and sustainability on the longer term.

From a very young age Ann has a passion for nature and for better understanding the connection between all living beings. After studying biology, ecology and plant science, she  later started digging into permaculture.

Aurel studied as a food engineer and grew up in a traditional Romanian farmer's family. He was involved in several similar projects and has a great interest in creative and innovative solutions for low energy input settings.

They decided to join their complementary qualities and skills in a project co-partnership to give good use to a piece of agriculture land. This cooperation resulted in the transformation of a classic over-cultivated field into a mini permaculture paradise in becoming...

With the help and support of a nice group of enthusiastic volunteers, we'll further develop this small scale farm project, aiming to make a difference and create a place to meet, to learn, to enjoy, to meditate, to work and to grow together.

in medieval style @streekproductenmarkt Geraardsbergen...

From the bottom of our hearts we thank you for your support, for your encouragement or for simply sharing our crowdfunding campaign on your social media platforms.

Every small step helps us to reach our goal!

with gratitude,

                           Garden of Joy team



...where work turns into pleasure and then into deliciousness...

with special thanks to Kenny Clarys, for making the campaign trailer and video :-)