Community gardens are more than places to grow food. They are more than places to connect with the community. They are also places for healing, sometimes simply from the stresses of the day, but sometimes from far more serious issues. Your support is critical to making this healing possible.
At the 46th and Pioneers Community Garden, a group of friends are growing food collectively and sharing the harvest. The friends share many things in common: they came to the US from Mexico, they are all survivors of domestic violence or other difficult family situations, and they are all focused on getting their lives back on track. Maria at El Centro de las Americas coordinates the weekly support group. Many of the women wanted to garden, but given their current circumstances, were reluctant to make a long-term commitment to a community garden plot. Now, they have established a group plot, which they take turns tending each week. They’re thrilled to have an enjoyable activity with their children. Maria says, “It is fantastic to see the women excited to help each other. They’re living on their own, and trying to adapt to their new life, and the garden has been very beneficial for them. Some of the women now have the confidence to grow their own plot next year.”
Thank you for helping families, like Maria’s group of women, to grow food!
Examples of what your impact can be:
Crops Perennial Donors
Set up a monthly donation now to regularly support community gardens all year long.
Humans from all walks of life crave a connection with nature.
For centuries, we’ve found solace in nature, whether through gardening, taking a stroll through the park, or hiking through the mountains. But with urbanization, technology, and a growing shortage of open spaces, it’s easy to become deprived of the green earth that we live in.
But we’re working to change that.
Through Community Crops, individuals with developmental disabilities are able to experience the power of nature and human connection.
Region V Services aids people with developmental disabilities in southeast Nebraska and since 2014, the garden at 46th & Pioneers has given their clients an opportunity to grow food for themselves and engage with the broader community.
Tammi McCullough, Region V staff member, shares the many benefits for the participants. “We get to meet new people at the garden, and in turn, people get to learn about our focus as well. A lot of our clients like fresh vegetables and fruit. They work hard in the garden. The fresh local food is a great remedy for many health conditions affecting our group such as diabetes.” The produce that is harvested by Region V at the 46th & Pioneers garden is taken to a Region V facility where it is prepared and shared by all of the clients.
Fresh air, sunshine, the smell of freshly turned dirt…it gets into a farmer’s blood and never leaves. As they say, you can take the boy out of the country, but you can’t take the country out of the boy. Charlie is no exception. After decades of farming near Kearney, he and his wife sold their land and retired to a mobile home in Lincoln.
Unfortunate events had left the couple with little more than Social Security to sustain them. Other than a tomato plant near their trailer, years went by without Charlie having a chance to grow. Then during a FoodNet pickup, Charlie learned about the Crops community garden at Oak Lake Church. He signed up for a plot (made possible by donors like you!), and on the first day of the season hobbled to the garden with his cane to give it a try. Throughout the season, he tended crops and swapped ideas with fellow growers.
The country boy in Charlie blossomed. Just being among the plants, in the fresh air, with dirt under his fingernails, was a kind of harvest—a heart full of joy. Charlie and his wife experienced:
A delicious abundance of their garden all summer long. So many vegetables!
A reduction in their dependence on FoodNet
Improved health. By the summer’s end, Charlie didn’t even need his cane!
Friendships and camaraderie. Charlie made friends and began to enjoy life again.
Charlie is recruiting others to grow in the community gardens, and we need your help for these new gardeners to thrive!
That’s what your donation to Community Crops grows: good health, joy, sustenance, and a new lease on life. What better way to share the abundance in your own life?
Without you, these gardening experiences aren’t possible. Please make a donation today.
Call Ingrid at 402.474.9802 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions!