Story and photo by Anna Sanders

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On June 5, Family Focus-Our Place and the Community and Economic Development Association (CEDA) unveiled “Our Community Garden,” a summer project in which a group of ten teenage girls and volunteers will lay soil, construct garden beds and plant seeds for a community produce garden located in the northern back lot of the Family Focus-Our Place at 2010 Dewey Ave.

“We’re going to spend the whole summer gardening,” said Marsha Belcher of CEDA.

The teen participants in the program had to write an essay explaining the importance of a community garden. Among the ten girls chosen to participate are Ania Gary, Simone Teamer, Jasmyne Hentz, Kayla Jackson and Angel Cowan, Allysah Boothe. The girls will be paid for working in the garden as a summer job. 

Family Focus-Our Place director, Dr. Dorothy Williams, said she believes the program would promote healthy eating and that it “brings the community together to keep our community healthy and strong.”

Despite the morning’s rain, Ms. Belcher said to the program’s participants, “It’s fun to get muddy and wet.” The unveiling was joined by a visit from WCPT’s Mike Nowak, who broadcasted his show from the event. “It’s when you grow your own food, you change your world,” said Mr. Nowak.

In addition to the garden unveiling, Family Focus-Our Place held a Health and Wellness Fair in the center’s basement.