2014 Project Orange Thumb Recipients

Fiskars® Project Orange Thumb® The Growing Together School and Community Garden in Madison, WI today, after a full garden makeover.

Grant Gardens

As a leader in the lawn and garden industry, Fiskars believes in contributing to community gardening and the healthy, sustainable living it provides. Through Project Orange Thumb®, Fiskars awards cash, garden tools and materials to help support community garden goals across North America. This year’s grant recipients are:

Onions for Autism-Veggies for Vets, Columbia Falls, Montana

Farming for the Future Academy is a nonprofit, public charity serving students with and without disabilities. The Academy programs reduce societal barriers for children through education and life-skills lessons using agriculture and cooperative business as a medium. The new Onions for Autism-Veggies for Vets garden will help students learn life skills and prepare for independent living through lessons on planting, growing, harvesting, and selling crops, farm safety, as well as nutrition education.

Little Sprouts, Wilmington, North Carolina

Boys and Girls Club of Wilmington, NC Inc. serves over 800 youths a month with programs that influence every part of the children’s lives and provides them with a positive place to grow into responsible, well-minded citizens. The new Little Sprouts garden will help change the health, eating habits and behaviors of young people in our community.

Growing North Lawndale Together, Chicago, Illinois

Better Boys Foundation has made an effort to positively influence at-risk and high-risk teenagers with apprentice-based programming that youth find relevant and that inspires pride in self and in community, improves academic performance. The Growing North Lawndale Together Community Garden will provide access to healthy food for the program participants and the surrounding community.

Riverfront Community Garden, Vancouver, British Columbia

South Vancouver Family Place Society is a not-for-profit, charitable organization that offers programs and services to families and caregivers with young children, birth to age 5. The Riverfront Community Garden will impact local families by providing them with food security and a place to visit and relax.

Historic Miss Tillie’s Corner Community Garden, St. Louis, Missouri

Gateway Greening is a non-profit organization based in St. Louis whose mission is to educate and empower people to strengthen their communities through gardening and urban agriculture. The organization provides a number of benefits to the community including job training, therapeutic horticulture, community development, alleviation of food security issues and improving the health of gardeners. The Historic Miss Tillie’s Corner Community Garden will provide a place for people to meet, learn, grow fresh produce, while facilitating community development.

Immaculate Heart of Mary Garden, Lafayette, Louisiana

The Black Chamber of Commerce envisions a community of friendly relationships with diverse cultural, economic and educational opportunities. The neighborhood surrounding the new community garden site is in great need of positive action and positive change. The new Immaculate Heart of Mary Garden will be a catalyst in improving the spirit of the neighborhood, while boosting revitalization efforts. The new space will allow people to grow food together, increase food access while also increasing the consumption of fruits and vegetables, and provide education for area residents.

Pine Manor Improvement Association, Fort Meyers, FL

The Pine Manor Improvement Association is a nonprofit organization that provides services to at-risk children and families in the Pine Manor neighborhood in Fort Myers, Florida. The new community garden will provide fresh produce and help residents become more self-sufficient through job training. This garden will provide produce that can be used not only to improve the diets of Pine Manor families, but also for hands-on training skills that can be translated to life-skills.

East Passyunk Crossing Community Gardens, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

East Passyunk Crossing Civic Association in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, has been working for the betterment of their community for over 7 years. The new garden will help the community in many ways, first by providing a green space where community members can grow produce and flowers, to help feed their families. The garden will also provide a beautiful, natural, peaceful environment where members of the community can congregate, socialize and host events. Donations from the shared gardens will go directly to neighborhood members that cannot afford healthy foods on their own.

Island School Community Garden, Lithue, Hawaii

Island School has a mission to prepare students to live productive, fulfilling lives as confident, responsible life-long learners and contributing members of society. Island School also provides a safe, nurturing environment that fosters creativity, critical thinking, initiative and respect for self and others. The new community garden will teach students how to grow their own healthy produce and live sustainably.

Bean Sprout Garden, Palisade, Minnesota

Palisade, MN is home to a number of single-parent households, many elderly citizens, and a number of others living with limited income and opportunity. Over the past decade Palisade has seen the closing of several key community institutions due to economic hardship, including our grocery store, and more recently, our public school. The Bean Sprout Garden in Palisade, Minnesota will be a garden that enhances the community as a teaching garden and gathering place. This garden will enable public education and engagement about the benefits of growing, preparing, eating and sharing fresh produce. The new garden will also be a source of affordable, healthy and fresh food for the participants and surrounding community.

Separation

Makeover Gardens

Meadowgreen Community Garden, Saskatoon, Canada

Children Hunger Education Program (CHEP) believes that food is a basic right and that inadequate nutrition adversely affects health, physical, mental, and emotional development, learning ability, and participation in community. The goal of Children Hunger Education Program is to promote the provision of nutritious food  and to facilitate actions that enhance self-reliance and dignity for children, their families and communities. The new Meadowgreen community garden will support and encourage community ownership taken towards issues of food security.  The new garden will also promote healthy eating by providing opportunities for nutrition and food system education. The space will positively influence a diverse group of community members that are excited to for the opportunity to be a part of their own food production.

Eagles Landing, Mobile, Alabama

Volunteers of America of Southeast (VOASE) began serving the South Alabama community in 1980 through the operation of three group homes for people with Developmental Disabilities. The goal of their programs is to enable persons served to become as independent as possible without jeopardizing the welfare or safety of the individual. The Eagles Landing Community Garden will be installed onsite at a housing shelter for veterans. The new garden will reduce food budgets while producing nutritious food. The new community space will aid in the development of stronger community through cooperative endeavors and increased self-sufficiency.