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First Social Enterprise Community Urban Farm launched at West Coast Park by NParks and social enterprise City Sprouts

01 Jun 2024

New integrated urban farming community hub aims to pilot collaboration with a social enterprise to create a gardening hub in the heartlands where community partners and stakeholders can come together

The hub comprises community greenhouses, a sustainability centre, gardening plots and a farm-to-table café across 5,000sqm of West Coast Park


This morning, the National Parks Board launched Singapore’s first Social Enterprise Community Urban Farm (SECUF) in a park, in collaboration with a social enterprise, City Sprouts. Spanning 5,000 sqm in West Coast Park, the SECUF will draw together stakeholders including social enterprises, Grassroots Organisations, volunteer groups such as the Nature Kakis Network, beneficiaries such as eldercare centres, and even individuals and gardeners keen to start their own nature-related initiatives. The SECUF will feature greenhouse lots and gardening plots for the community and SECUF partners to rent, as well as communal spaces, including an integrated Community Hall and a café with a social mission where the community can gather and run programmes. The SECUF is also part of efforts to strengthen community stewardship and social resilience under our City in Nature vision.

Minister for National Development and Minister-in-charge of Social Services Integration, Mr Desmond Lee, officiated the launch and participated in activities organised by the community.


Promoting community gardening with the establishment of SECUFs

Gardening plays an important part in Singapore’s transformation into a City in Nature while serving as an avenue for people from different backgrounds to bond over their common passion for gardening. Together with the Mind Science Centre of the National University Health System, NParks had studied the benefits of gardening on the mental resilience of Singapore residents during the COVID-19 pandemic when social activities were restricted.

The study[1], published in 2021, found that the mental resilience of those who gardened was significantly higher. Further analysis on the gardening group showed that more than one hour of weekly gardening time was associated with better mental resilience scores.

NParks has been promoting community gardening through various initiatives. It began with the launch of Community In Bloom (CIB) with a group of gardening enthusiasts in 2005, followed by the launch of the Allotment Gardening Scheme in 2016. More recently in 2020, when many had to stay home due to COVID-19 restrictions, NParks distributed complimentary packets of leafy and fruited vegetable seeds to interested members of the public as part of the Gardening with Edibles initiative to enhance well-being in the community by leveraging the benefits of gardening.

The gardening movement continues to grow from strength to strength. As an extension of these efforts, NParks explored partnering with social enterprises to provide members of the community with more social outreach activities related to gardening and horticulture. The SECUF Grant Scheme was thus launched in 2021. Under the scheme, social enterprises keen to organise gardening-related programmes can apply for funding support while social enterprises successful in bidding for NParks’ SECUF site tender can apply for infrastructure funding support to allow them to develop community urban farms as platforms for such programmes to be organised.

Activities in these SECUFs could include the leasing of gardening plots within its facilities, organising workshops and lessons on gardening as well as community harvest festivals, among others. Specially curated gardening programmes for seniors and community groups with special needs would also be conducted within the SECUFs as part of efforts to ensure that the programmes are inclusive and accessible to diverse community stakeholders. Besides being a platform for community engagement, SECUFs also provide residents in the community with micro-employment opportunities.


Gardening hub collaboration with social enterprise, City Sprouts

The SECUF project at West Coast Park marks the debut of Singapore's first urban community farm in a park opened in collaboration with a social enterprise. It is a joint effort by NParks and City Sprouts to pilot the concept of a gardening hub in the heartlands, where different community partners and stakeholders can come together within our parks to enjoy and bond over gardening activities and specially curated gardening-related programmes.

In addition to being awarded the tender to set up the first SECUF at West Coast Park, City Sprouts has also applied for the SECUF Infrastructure Support Grant. City Sprouts is developing the site at West Coast Park to be a platform for gardening and nature-centric programmes. The SECUF, City Sprouts @ West Coast, will feature 33 greenhouse lots where gardening activities and in-house nature-related programmes will take place, along with 41 gardening plots for the community to rent, as well as communal spaces including an integrated Community Hall and a café with a social mission. City Sprouts @ West Coast will work with community engagement partners such as the Nature Kakis Network, to shape experiences and initiatives that encourage community stewardship.  

City Sprouts will partner its tenants, Orang Laut SG, Ordinary Mood Café, and Wildlings in its long-term goals of engaging all segments of society and promoting Singaporean culture and heritage unique to the West Coast. These programmes will bring the wider community together to cultivate a deeper appreciation of nature.

City Sprouts @ West Coast is also committed to working closely with beneficiaries such as St Luke’s Eldercare and Lions Befrienders over the long term to engage all members of the community meaningfully and purposefully through programmes run by City Sprouts and its partners.


NParks’ sustained efforts in promoting community stewardship through community gardening initiatives

As part of a sustained effort to work with social enterprises to establish SECUFs, NParks has just published the second SECUF tender for the next community urban farm to be launched at Pasir Ris Park. Interested social enterprises are invited to submit their applications via Ge-Biz, the Singapore government’s e-procurement portal.

NParks also announced that 194 allotment gardening plots will open for application and balloting via AXS channels from 3 June 2024, 10.00am to 16 June 2024, 11.59pm. These plots will open for applications at various existing allotment gardens including Aljunied Park, Choa Chu Kang Park, Pasir Ris Park, Sengkang Riverside Park, and Yishun Park.




[1] Angela Sia, Puay Yok Tan, John Chee Meng Wong, Sophianne Araib, Wee Foong Ang, Kenneth Boon Hwee Er, “The impact of gardening on mental resilience in times of stress: A case study during the COVID-19 pandemic in Singapore”, Urban Forestry and Urban Greening, Vol. 68, 2021, accessible via:

Last updated on 03 June 2024

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