February to July 2023
Thanks for your interest in our Certificate in Community Orcharding! CICO is a unique course that combines high quality online learning with 7 action-packed, face-to-face training days. You will learn from orchard experts at a range of projects across London, and top up your learning at home with over 100 online resources and a course book. The level 3 course is accredited by Crossfields Institute and involves some homework. We’ve been running CICO courses since 2017 and they’ve been hugely successful, with over 115 students becoming qualified orchardists. This course will be known as CICO11!
Sorry – Feb- July 2023 course full!
What can I gain from this course?
Many of our CICO students have moved onto exciting careers in urban food-growing, like managing community gardens, working for organisations in the food sector (including The Orchard Project!), or as professional gardeners/designers. They have also enjoyed meeting other like-minded food growers and enjoyed becoming part of our informal orcharding network.
“Taking the [CICO] course helped me out professionally…After finishing the course, I obtained a job as an Estate Worker in a Hertfordshire park…Being able to talk about the course helped me out in the interview.” Gora, CICO3
“There are many promises and pitfalls when maintaining orchards in cities, however the holistic approach TOP uses is a comprehensive system which a community can use to bring this historical tradition into our modernised lives.” Dish, CICO4
“I have done some marking for TOP and also have a client booked in to prune their fruit tree. Found BOTH these opportunities through TOP.” Mirjam, CICO6
“I’m now a project manager at a Forest Garden and I could not have got this job without my CICO experience.” Bethany, CICO7
“This is the best course I’ve ever done!” Franki, CICO8
What to Expect
You must attend all the face-to-face training days to be able to gain the Certificate. These take place on Saturdays, 10:00-16:00, and are held at various locations across London:
- Sat 18th Feb – Orchard Intro – Sufra, Brent
- Sat 11th Mar – grafting & pruning – Living Under One Sun, Tottenham
- Sat 18th Mar – tree planting & surveys – Wolves Lane, Tottenham
- TBC May – Groups – Venue TBC
- Sat 20th May – Soil – Community Apothecary, Waltham Forest
- Sat 10th Jun – Biodiversity, pests & disease – Living Under One Sun, Tottenham
- Sat 15th Jul – Design, grafting & pruning – Wolves Lane, Tottenham
45 films and powerpoints (with subtitles), 26 interactive quizzes and 33 pieces of online reading material. The training platform will be available a few days before the course starts and for a year after it finishes. To introduce this and for a course overview, you should attend one of these Zoom meetings:
- Wed 1st Feb, 18:00-19:30 – introductory Zoom OR
- Sun 5th Feb, 16:00-17:30 – introductory Zoom.
To support the online materials and the face-to-face training, you’ll have a 200 page course book, access to friendly tutors and of course, your fellow students (who for some reason are always lovely!). This will help you stay on top of the work which includes 19 pieces of homework and four assessed quizzes. On average you can expect a couple of pieces of homework a month and will need to allow about 2 hours a week. Your practical skills will be assessed on the face-to-face training days. Please note it’s similar to doing an A level but we can be flexible; if the accreditation is not for you, you can attend without being assessed for the Certificate.
- £1,100 (general x 6) – full course & accreditation (payment by instalments available)
- £800 (concessionary x 4) – full course & accreditation (payment by instalments available)
- £800 (unaccredited x 1) – full course without accreditation (payment by instalments available)
- £500 (materials only) – access to online learning materials and course book only
- FREE (Finnis Scott x 6) – full course with or without accreditation subject to eligibility criteria below
Concessionary Places: For those who are unemployed, economically inactive or on low income (below £20,000 p.a.).
Finnis Scott Places: These places are sponsored by the Finnis Scott and are open to people from minoritised groups and/or those aged 18-30. We will accept 12 applications for the 6 places and will prioritise people who meet multiple criteria. Deadline for applications is midnight on Sunday 29th January and we’ll let you know if you have been successful by Tuesday 31st January.
Pay-by-instalments: If you wish to pay-by-instalments please contact Sarah@theorchardproject.org.uk prior to booking this ticket. The full cost of the course is £1,100 and you need to pay an initial deposit of £295 then set up a monthly standing order for £115 starting on 1st February and ending on 1st August (£115 x 7). For concessionary and unaccredited tickets, you will pay an initial £170 and then £90 for 7 months.
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