Community picnic


Cook and eat together. Practice the language through studying local recipes and cooking together. Learn about different cultural backgrounds.

Description of the activity

In the Health Garden they organise workshops with picnics that are facilitated by the immigrants.

Together with the group, they do the shopping list and deal with what they are going to cook which includes the costs of the food they share in the cooking group. To learn the Swedish language, they go through all the ingredients’ names in Swedish and in their native language, the coach puts great emphasis on the Swedish pronunciation of the names of the ingredients. When they made all purchases, they prepare the food in the kitchen of the Orangery which is in the Health Garden. They have a grill as they grill vegetables and chicken as well as fish. Throughout the preparation and during cooking, they talk about the different names of the ingredients and what they can be used for. They exchange different uses for these and learn Swedish together to get the right pronunciation.

By explaining the different ingredients’ names in Swedish, they feel knowledgeable and then their self-esteem is strengthened. The initiative for the picnic was taken by the gardener in the Health garden. The activity has produced good results and has become a recurring activity with the new trainees who come and who are immigrants.


Those who participate in Health Garden’s picnic activity, have knowledge of cooking, they must take responsibility for the fact that the activity is well implemented. The gardener and other staff in the garden make sure that the immigrants integrate, and the trainees speak Swedish during working hours and ask many questions, both within the language but also about general issues related to Swedish society and Sweden’s culture. Making a picnic to achieve social integration requires preparation and planning from both the gardener but also for the interns with immigrant backgrounds. The trainee, with the advice of his mentor in this case, should be able to plan, shop and perform the tasks in the picnic.

Steps for the implementation of the activity

They plan together with the gardener and immigrant trainees. What should be included in the picnic and who should participate, which day how many to come, what kind of food they should eat etc.

The trainees start by talking to all those who will be on the picnic. Planning for which day and time the picnic should be. And what they all want to eat and drink at the picnic.

Use recipes for the different dishes they have decided on.

Make shopping list.

Buy food for the picnic.

Prepare the place where the picnic will take place: Arrange tables, chairs, in a good place in the garden where they can grill.

Preparations for the food and arrangement of groceries in bowls and on plates.

Place plates, glasses, cutlery and napkins for all the guests and arrange flowers on the table to make it welcoming and pleasant.

Materials and methods

When it comes to materials that are to be used in the picnic, there are different recipes that the trainee should use, which means that they find out what the different ingredients are called in Swedish, and how they are to be cooked. In this way, the trainee learns new words and new uses for the ingredients.

Being able to have a picnic as an activity in the Health Garden is possible because they have garden tables and garden chairs, and a stationary barbecue station outdoors and a kitchen in the orangery, where it is possible to prepare the dishes before they are grilled.

Materials and human resources:
The gardener and the trainees have this as a task together. the trainees should be able to hold a picnic with the support of the gardener. All the material needed for the picnic is paper plates, plastic glasses, cutlery, napkins. Barbecue charcoal, ignition fluid, barbecue cutlery, matches, (fire extinguisher as security if the fire spreads) The food they have decided on can be, chicken, vegetables, root vegetables, fruit, drink depending on which recipe they use to have the BBQ.

The picnic activity takes about 4 hours, they start by preparing after all the groceries have been purchased. Cooking, time to eat, and finishing work is done together in the group so that everyone should be helped and that they should simultaneously train in the Swedish.

The cost of this activity is divided into those who participate in the picnic activity. Everyone pays for their food and this means that there will be no extra cost.

Learning outcomes for the participants

The trainees see this as an advantage to make this picnic for their colleagues and for their Mentor gardener. They say they learn a lot about being able to shop for groceries and find the right recipe for many people with different cultural backgrounds.
This activity is a good training for the trainees to learn to be involved in Swedish society, they can take responsibility with planning, making purchases, collecting money and completing the assignment. The trainees get the responsibility to handle the event and arrange for everything to work. This means that they learn to take responsibility, learn Swedish and strengthen their self-confidence. The migrants learn step by step how to take care of a garden.