An idealistic agriculture project that blends refugees farmers, community gardens and local government's embrace of sustainability will officially come to life at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, March 14, at the United Methodist Children's Home.
That's when ground will be broken on Decatur's Kitchen Garden -- the name recently bestowed on the idea that's been talked about for years. Earlier it was called a "market garden."
Global Growers Network, a nonprofit that helps international refugee farmers find places to till the soil, explains the concept behind the garden in a press release.
Decatur’s Kitchen Garden is designed to foster community, offer education about healthy food traditions and growing practices, and enhance biodiversity through cutting-edge sustainable resource management.
Through a Global Growers market initiative, good produce will generate supplemental income for community producers when it is distributed directly to DeKalb County residents through local markets, restaurant liaisons, community food co-ops and a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program.
“The Garden will host more than an acre of urban market garden space, to be cultivated by culturally diverse community producers from our local refugee communities and nearby neighborhoods,” stated Susan Pavlin, Director of Global Growers Network.
“A range of annual and perennial foods, with an emphasis on specialty cultural crops, will be grown at this community market garden site,” she continued.
The Burundi Women's Farm is Global Growers' big success so far; you may have seen the women farming in the garden off Sams Street or selling produce at the Grant Park Farmer's Market.
On March 5, the Decatur City Commission approved a three-year, $1-per-year lease with the Children's Home for two acres of land for the garden.
Decatur Mayor Bill Floyd and Dr. S. Elizabeth Ford of the DeKalb Board of Health will speak at the event.
The groundbreaking event will take place at the Children’s Home at 500 S. Columbia Drive, just outside the Decatur City Limits. Organizers urge anybody attending to wear their "outdoor shoes."
Here are some previous stories that appeared in Patch about the garden: