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USDA Doles out 10 Grants for People’s Gardens

Posted on the 14 November 2011 by 2ndgreenrevolution @2ndgreenrev

USDA Doles out 10 Grants for People’s GardensWhile small compared to subsidies for corn, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced nearly three-quarters of a million dollars in grants “to support 155 People’s Gardens in neighborhoods” throughout the United States. 10 programs were awarded sums ranging from $5,000 to $150,000. For a complete accounting of the recipients and award denominations, see the list below. A recent article touched on the idea of food security. The USDA cites this idea as one of the most significant factors in funding community gardening projects. “These sustainable community gardens will give residents direct access to fresh fruits and vegetables in underserved neighborhoods. A lack of access to fresh and nutritious food fuels obesity and domestic food insecurity—a condition where households experience limited or uncertain access to adequate food.”

Funding was provided through USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), which oversees the People’s Garden Grant Program (PGGP). According to the announcement, “PGGP was designed to invest in urban and rural areas identified as food deserts or food insecure areas, particularly those with persistent poverty. In addition, PGGP seeks to address health issues closely related to malnutrition, including food insecurity, obesity, diabetes and heart disease, through onsite education programs.” Community gardens provide a host of benefits from reduced food miles to seasonal, fresh produce (which can be organically grown) at a fraction of the cost to consumers.

There are more than 1,400 People’s Gardens, which have donated more than “1 million pounds of produce to local food banks, food kitchens and other charitable organizations through their ‘Share Your Harvest’ campaign.” Click here to view a map of the gardens. Here is the list of recipients an the amount they received:

  • Homer Soil and Water Conservation District, Alaska, $110,500
  • Arizona Board of Regents, University of Arizona, Arizona, $5,000
  • Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust, California, $29,000
  • Denver Urban Gardens, Colorado, $70,000
  • Knox Parks, Inc., Connecticut, $50,000
  • Heritage Ranch, Inc., Hawaii, $110,500
  • Alliance for Community Trees, Inc., Maryland, $150,000
  • Towson University, Maryland, $60,000
  • Calhoun Conservation District, Michigan, $70,000
  • Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation, Ohio, $70,000

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