In 1994, Arizona State University College of Nursing and people from the immediate neighborhood conducted over 200 in home health surveys. Goals and numerous activities evolved from these conversations including our first community garden that responded to the need for healthy fresh produce.
Our first garden was planted in 1995 with guidance from the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension. The garden prompted four community members (including a homeless man and disabled woman) to become Master Gardeners and an elderly wheel-chair bound woman to form a 4-H Club. Our Master Gardeners also helped establish gardens for apartment complex, schools and at other locations.
There is a video on YouTube about it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4qFLbWbWnGs&feature=channel_page
This experience taught us that the community garden produces much more than food; it is a place where a sense of belonging and relationships between people from all walks of life easily evolve.
The planting areas were prepared by Spencer Watkins for his Eagle Scout project and the garden project was spearheaded by Chandra Jennings-Jackson for her graduate project.
The second phase of the garden was undertaken by adult probation. The community garden helps transition their life back into family and community. Many probationers bring their families with them while they perform court ordered community service here. This has led to their involvement in other programs and continued volunteer service.
In 2009, Arizona State University nutrition students and Mesa Community College Service Learning students began working with our gardeners on a recipe book. Everyone prepares a dish for our weekly meeting. The students evaluated the nutritional content and made recommendations for healthier alternatives.
The garden is open to anyone who wants to participate at no cost and at your convenience.
Dates and times
Every Wednesday: 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm
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