ISGD the first to be on the 2015 IGFSA list
"I.G.F.S.A list for industry endorsed qualification based education."
Irene School of Garden design is on the forefront of a new age in the green industry. The I.G.F.S.A is probably one of the most exciting ventures for the green industry that gardening has seen in the last decade. Due to launch in May 2015, the Independent Gardeners Forum for South Africa and Africa, aims not to change but enhance, not only the gardening industry, but all the associated industries for gardening as well as large scale Landscape design and installation.
In South Africa the gardening industries has long been neglected, and for most part left to its own devices. The I.G.F.S.A aims to create a community that promises to guide education, design, installation, supply and maintenance, in order to regain trust in the industry, and provide the public with enough information to make more informed decisions.
The fact that the whole initiative will be independent is great news for the public, and does not compete with existing structures and institutions. This means that the I.G.F.S.A. body will receive more direct feedback on services rendered from the green industry and by means of a performance based system can help the public choose the best possible solution to their gardening needs. The good news to everyone is that there will be a structured guideline with carefully considers design fees, mark-up fees and other costs. This alone is a structure the industry has needed for a number of years, as customers either underpays for design fees, or is overcharged based on a company’s abilities to advertise.
Furthermore, the biggest advance will most likely be in educational fields. National outdated models rely on time spent on outdated material in order to obtain educational recognition, and this is by no means wrong, but a more effective way is to revise traditional industry standards which date back quite a number of years, in some cases even decades, and monitor quality of education rather than hours spent in classrooms. Previously the funding for such an approach was just simply not available, and because it did not address problems specific to garden design but rather conformed to convention, it was most likely not pursued. The I.G.F.S.A intends to provide additional support, independently, provided the quality is addressed and not the quantity. Although every educational institution’s pupils are welcome to register, and all courses can be submitted for accreditation, the Irene School of Garden Design’s Full time and Part time Plus courses will be the first entries based on their content and monitored outcome over the past 3 years in the view of the I.G.F.S.A.
Ultimately at the end of the day the Independent Gardeners Forum for South Africa wants to become the modern Garden Club, brimmed with secure advice, and truly make the green industries better. We are all truly looking forward to this much awaited venture.