Rally support to beautify and sustain the Chicora Place Community Garden.
The Chicora Place Community Garden sits in the heart of a food desert in North Charleston, South Carolina. While the City of North Charleston has generously allowed Metanoia CDC to start a community garden at this site, without continued investment from the City their garden cannot thrive.
Successful community gardens provide healthy food and build healthy relationships, beautify the neighborhood, reduce crime, and slow traffic by creating a safe public space that engages a multi-ethnic and multi-generational community at little or no cost to the city.
Since July 2011, Metanoia has leveraged a $1,000 grant to procure over $12,000 of in-kind donations and volunteer labor to create a unique organic garden space. The garden has grown from ten to over twenty raised beds and now includes a walk path and rain catchment system that will be store compost tea to organically fertilize the beds.
The Chicora-Cherokee community is 110% supportive of the work that has been done. In fact, neighborhood residents and several local businesses have contributed time and water resources in an attempt to keep the garden alive but we cannot ask them to continue without some tangible return on their costly investment, namely city support of the project.
The Chicora Place Community Garden has the potential to regularly yield several hundred of pounds of fresh produce and be productive 12 months out of the year. In addition, Metanoia is taking steps to engage and educate more community members:
-Securing neighborhood input on design and desired crops;
-Offering one-on-one tours and quick garden lessons for curious residents;
-Establishing a regular garden work day in which volunteers receive free gardening lessons and supplies.
We need City of North Charleston support to realize their vision.
1) Allow the community to paint a mural on Calvert Street (June 18-22);
2) Install a source of potable water in the garden;
3) Supply trash cans for city pickup; and,
4) Keep the commitment to the neighborhood by adding a playground to the space complete with water fountains and restrooms.
On behalf of Metanoia CDC and the Chicora-Cherokee community, I want to thank Mayor Summey and North Charleston City Council in advance for their attention to this urgent matter.
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