Community Gardens

Community Gardens

Community gardens offer many potential benefits: 1) essential nourishment; 2) healthy exercise; 3) incentive to increase consumption of fruits and vegetables; 4) potential income from the sale of fresh and canned fruits and vegetables; 5) and exposure to fruits and vegetables for those who are unfamiliar with plant names, varieties and growing conditions.  Eastern Shore Healthy Communities and the Eastern Shore Health District issued a request for proposals (RFP) in the spring of 2014 for organizations that would like to newly develop or sustain an existing community garden on Virginia’s Eastern Shore.  Grant recipients included:

  • Accomack County Cooperative Extension (Jackie Haymaker) and the Tangier Island Combined School for small take-home gardens, health education, and the unique challenges of gardening on Tangier Island due to poor soil and tidal flooding.
  • No Limits Eastern Shore (Rachel Evans), dedicated to improving the lives of brain injury survivors, for special raised gardens that provide ease of access by their clients, support group meals at their facility, and contributions to charity.
  • The Foodbank of the Eastern Shore (Charmin Horton), to provide additional support to their already established garden that produces food for the most needy.
  • New Roots Youth Garden (Brook Thomas) to support their existing effort with school children aged 12 years and under engaging them in learning-by-doing, including planting and maintaining their garden in Cape Charles and other food-related education and activities.
  • Community Services Board (CSB) – Parksley and Master Gardeners (Sharon Parker, Kitty Crokes & Janet Rochester), to provide education on gardening and nutrition as well as a mix of vegetables, fruits and flowers for CSB clients.
  • Central Green Food Forest (Jay Ford).  This ambitious project proposed to recruit businesses and volunteers to take classes and provide free labor for the gardening and harvest work of a unique farming concept.

 

This environmental change initiative was funded by the Virginia Department of Health. Work Group Chair is Ellen Archer (Eastern Shore Health Department)