Skip to content

Louisa: Future Gardeners Programmes Manager

As the Future Gardeners Programmes Manager at Bankside Open Spaces Trust, Louisa acts as a catalyst for change and opportunity in the green space sector. Louisa’s eight-year journey is a testament to resilience, transformation, and unwavering dedication.

In her role, Louisa spearheads a horticultural training programme designed to carve pathways for disadvantaged individuals into meaningful careers within the green space industry. This initiative breathes life into aspirations that may have otherwise withered in the face of adversity.

“I became disillusioned in my previous career in online advertising and wanted to do something more meaningful.”

She found what she was looking for when she transitioned into a field where every planted seed holds the promise of a greener, more sustainable future.

Louisa’s journey wasn’t without challenges, including low salaries and a lack of experience and qualifications. Louisa overcame these hurdles through resilience and determination – leveraging her previous higher-paying career to offset lower wages, volunteering to gain experience, and pursuing evening studies for her RHS Level 2.

She built up her experience through working with The Conservation Volunteers, engaging young offenders in allotment projects, and contributing to Community Options, assisting individuals with mental health needs back into employment. These roles were stepping stones that led her to her current impactful position.

Louisa acknowledges the industry’s overall lack of diversity and inclusivity. However, the Future Gardeners Programme stands as a beacon of change – a programme that not only addresses these shortcomings but actively promotes diversity and inclusivity.

One of Louisa’s proudest achievements:

“The establishment and expansion of the Future Gardeners Programme, reaching beyond central London to the Olympic Park, with further expansion plans in the pipeline.”

Louisa says she feels highly satisfied in her green space career, enjoying the flexibility to work indoors and outdoors, and she notes an improvement in her mental health since joining the sector. Her favourite aspect of working in the green space sector is clear – helping others find their fulfilling career and she is “always looking for ways to encourage more people, especially young people into the industry.”

“I‘m motivated by not being at a desk all day every day, being outside, and making a difference.”

Her advice for aspiring professionals is simple yet effective:

“Study, volunteer, and explore diverse roles and companies to find what resonates best.”

If you are interested in the Future Gardeners Programme, find out more here.