Current Projects

Acton Community Garden 

The Acton Community Garden is a place for students, staff and everyone else to get their hands dirty and grow some food. Since September 2015 the Canberra Environment Centre has completed a number of projects in the garden in order to re-establish it as a food producing paradise.  

Two Work for the Dole programs are continuing in 2018, alongside a LEAD disability program, three days a week.

everyone is welcome and encouraged to join us in the garden.

If you need a break from your studies or you just want to help out and take home some fresh veggies or simply want to learn a thing or two about growing your own food, come down and say hello.

Acton Community Garden is open to keen beans of all skill levels, all year round. The garden is right here at the Canberra Environment Centre and we would love to see you down here to share some stories, get your hands dirty and eat fresh veggies from the garden.


    Get involved by:

    • Coming along to a weekly gardening bee: 
      •  Wednesday afternoons: summer hours 4-6pm & winter hours 3-5pm (winter hours start on 4 April 2018) 
      • Saturday mornings:  10am - 12pm
    • Dropping by the garden between 9am - 5pm, Tuesday to Thursday. 
    • Bringing your food scraps (no raw meat please) to our communal composting bin. The bin is located behind the garden shed and marked with a sign that says 'public food scrap collection'. The bin can be accessed 24/7. 
    • Joining us the occasional woodfired pizza. We usually fire up the oven on the second Saturday of the month to coincide with Repair Cafe. It's a great opportunity to meet plenty of like minded people and get your hands dirty. 
    • Using the space for education, research or therapeutic purposes. Have an idea? Let us know by visiting, calling on 6248 0885 or emailing us at garden[at] 
    • Following us on facebook for updates on gardening bees and special events. 
    • Sign up to our mailing list by clicking the button below

    Grow Together

    Grow Together is a nutrition education program for young children that was established by the Canberra Environment Centre in 2011. The aim of the project is to introduce kids to healthy food and build an awareness of the natural environment through growing food, composting food scraps and having a whole lot of fun.  Childcare centres are provided with raised garden beds, a rainwater tank, a worm farm and a compost bin which become the platform for weekly education sessions.  The children are involved in all steps of the growing process from planting seeds to harvesting and eating raw foods.

    Grow Together is currently running at six Southside Community Services childcare centres: Acacia Children’s Education and Care Centre, Binara Early Childhood Centre, Birralee Care and Educational Centre, Currawong Childcare Centre, Forrest Early Childhood Centre and Narrabundah Children's Cottage.

    Grow Together is supported by ACT Healthy Canberra Grants in 2017.

    Vermiculture and Composting

    In late 2016, a team of dedicated work experience participants began work on an industrial worm farm and composting facility at the Canberra Environment Centre. The aim is to build a fully functional vermiculture and composting system for the ANU and surrounding area. So far, greenwaste from the community garden and food waste from the Centre are composted into one of three stations that operate on rotation.

    Progress has also been made on a large-scale worm farm. Recycled materials, including a recycled bath tub, will be used to house the worms.  Food waste will be fed into the upper layer, where worms will turn them into vermicompost. The ready made sink will collect the worm tea and castings.

    We are inviting all cafes, halls of residences, offices, other campus groups and individuals to contribute food waste, kitchen scraps and green waste to the facility. Feel free to drop by with your compostable waste and place in the marked compost bins.

    Tumbleweed Worm Farms and Compost Bins

    The Canberra Environment Centre has partnered with Tumbleweed to offer the Canberra community reduced price worm-farms and compost bins.  All are simple to set up and can process the majority of your household food waste.  Composting and worm farming help you to reduce the amount of food waste you send to landfill while producing organic fertiliser for your garden at the same time! Please call or drop by to check out what we have in stock. Ask us about worms on (02) 6248 0885.

    Find our more information about worm farms and composting here


    Worm Cafe: $60 

    Worm blanket: $10 each

    Organi-bin (for collecting scraps in the kitchen): $15 

    220L round compost bin $45 each

    240L rectangular compost bin (comes with doors at base) $65 each

    140L Compost tumbler $145

    Wee Ones Modern Cloth Nappy Display

    Modern cloth nappies are affordable and environmentally friendly nappies. Unlike their plastic, disposable counterparts or old towel-style cloth nappies, they are reusable, washable and non-irritating. Our Wee Ones Cloth Nappy Display is a library for parents who want to have a feel and a look at the types of modern cloth nappies, accessories, inserts and kits before making a purchase. Call in any time between Monday to Thursday 10am – 5pm.

    Current brands and manufacturers include:

    • Little Diamond Bums
    • Eenee Designs
    • ecobumba & Bubba J
    • Baby Beehind
    • GroVia
    • Softbots
    • Cushie Tushies
    • Kodomo (Omaiki)
    • Bambooty
    • The Pocket Nanny
    • Bambino Mia
    • Nappies Covered
    • gloBugs
    • Issy Bear Nappies
    • Bonnibumns
    • Itti bitti
    • Baby mumma
    • Real Nappies
    • Hatchlings Cloth Nappies
    • Chloe Toes

    The Recyclery

    The Canberra Environment Centre has a lovely next door neighbour known simply as The Recyclery.

    May 2018 update: The Recyclery is currently under a change in management and is closed until further notice. Bikes can still be donated through the CEC however no refurbished bikes are available for purchase at this time. 

    The Recyclery was previously run by LEAD as a not-for- profit enterprise creating employment for people with disabilities and recycling unwanted bikes at the same time.  Pre-loved bikes are donated, restored and sold onsite for very reasonable prices.  Have an unwanted bike to donate or in need of some cheap wheels? You've come to the right place!

    Once you have chosen a bike at the Recyclery (next door), pop into the Centre to make a payment. See you soon for a test ride!

    Opening hours:  9am – 4pm Monday to Thursday.


    You can pay for your bike via bank transfer or with cash at the Canberra Environment Centre. 


    Repair Cafe

    Save items from landfill, connect with neighbours and share skills.

    The Canberra Environment Centre is proud to host a Repair Cafe on the second Saturday of each month at the CEC (except for summer months). Repair Cafe is a community group of volunteers working together to fix and recycle everyday things. Check out the Repair Cooperative's facebook page for updates. 

    Anyone can come along with a broken household item and get some help from other volunteers to restore it to its former glory. You could bring along clothing, bicycles, rusty tools, furniture (or photos of it), small appliances, costume jewellery or many other things.

    Volunteers have experience in repairing items, and usually bring their own tools and help visitors fix their broken item, teaching them how to do it for next time. Volunteer skills include fixing clothing, battery-powered electricals, woodwork, bicycles, jewellery and plastics. If you can bring spare parts (like zippers, clasps, chains) for your broken item, this will make it easier to fix, but otherwise we'll improvise! Attendees can also bring their own tools if they have them and use the time to repair with others, or seek advice. Our tools are limited but we are building up a small collection of communal tools, that are donated by members of the community.

    If you have skills to share or tools to share on the day or donate, please get in touch, either by coming along on the day or emailing

    Who can attend? 

    Repair Cafe is open to anyone! If you have experience in fixing household items, we'd love it if you could share your skills. If you don't have repairing skills, come along and learn from some of our more experienced volunteers. Children are welcome, as long as they are supervised, and don't use power tools.

    Repair Cafe.jpg

    Past Projects

    Ecotherapy Garden

    This project is developing a garden, consisting predominantly of native plants, at the public mental health ward (2N) at Calvary Hospital.

    The garden provides a private therapeutic environment for patients to undertake occupational therapy activities, and to use as they wish. In planning for this project we found that therapeutic gardens have long been seen to be beneficial to patients in health care environments.  In 1964, the term ‘biophilia’ was first used to describe the psychological orientation of being attracted to things that are alive and vital.  This theory has been extensively researched and has been demonstrated to have positive effects on people’s psychological wellbeing and health. Environmental factors such as the existence and use of gardens have been linked to decreased patient recovery time, decreasing use of pain medication and reduced stress to healthcare workers and patients’ families

    The garden also creates a natural space within the densely built environment of the hospital to encourage and promote biodiversity as an aid to creating a healthy and sustainable environment for all hospital users: patients, staff and visitors. Environmentally, a garden of this sort at the hospital contributes to better urban biodiversity and native habitat and forms a link between the hospital campus and surrounding bushland.  The area around the Calvary campus contains remnant bushland and through incorporating native species in the built landscape we establish and maintain connection between the natural and built environments.

    Carbon Challenge

    The 2012 Carbon Challenge was such a success that the ACT Government’s Environment and Planning Directorate decided to launch a new and improved version on their new look ACTSmart website in 2015. We have worked closely with the EPD in developing the new Carbon Challenge and we think you’re going to love it.

    If you are ready for a new challenge, join us at: and register today!