Food & Drink

Union County Freeholder Board Awards “UC Means Green” Community Garden Grants

10509f63bcabb86726d8_Scotch_Plains_Garden_collage__small_.jpg
10509f63bcabb86726d8_Scotch_Plains_Garden_collage__small_.jpg

UNION COUNTY, NJ - Seven Elizabeth locations were chosen to receive a 2017 Union County Means Green Community Garden Grant, awarded by the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders.

The gardens will provide donations of fresh produce to those in need as well as education, recreation, civic service and social opportunities for gardeners and their communities.

The new round of funding follows on the success of the 2016 Union County Means Green Community Garden Grants program, an initiative of Freeholder Chairman Bruce H. Bergen.

Sign Up for E-News

“This year’s group of awardees demonstrates that the community garden movement touches Union County residents of all ages and from all walks of life,” said Freeholder Chairman Bruce H. Bergen. “On behalf of the Freeholder Board I wish our awardees all the best for an enriching experience and a bountiful harvest.”

The 2017 UC Means Green garden grant program is administered by the non-profit organization Groundwork Elizabeth on behalf of Freeholder Board. Groundwork also administered the 2016 program, which covered 19 projects in 10 municipalities.

“Groundwork’s expert guidance helped to ensure a successful first year for the grant program,” said Bergen. “We’re pleased to have them on board again to administer the 2017 round of funding.”

“Many Union County residents are eager to reach out and help those in need, and community gardens provide an opportunity to participate in a service activity while also spending time out in the fresh air with friends and neighbors,” said Freeholder Vice Chairman Sergio Granados, who chairs the Union County Open Space, Recreation and Historic Preservation Trust Fund. “It is especially meaningful to engage our young people in raising and donating fresh produce, both as an educational experience and because helps them to see that even at a very young age they can still have a positive impact on the health and well-being of their families and the whole community.”

To help fill the demand for educational gardens, this year Granados introduced a new community garden funding program for schools called Union County Kids Dig In. Also administered by Groundwork, the new program is funding garden projects at 32 schools.

“We are thrilled to administer UC Kids Dig In and UC Means Green on behalf of the Freeholder Board,” said Groundwork Executive Director Jonathan Phillips. “Interest in community gardening is strong all across Union County, from our cities to our suburban areas.  Growing food locally helps build healthier families, and often improves vacant and underused land for the benefit and enjoyment of local residents."

The 2017 UC Means Green awardees are:

Elizabeth

  • Make the Road New Jersey Community Garden (located at the Snyder Academy)
  • Elmora Branch Library Community Garden
  • E’Port Community Garden (sponsored by Prevention Links)
  • P.I.S.C. Vera Verde (located at Portuguese Instructive Social Club)
  • Jewish Family Service Community Vegetable Garden
  • Elizabeth Branch Community Garden (Gateway Family YMCA)
  • Trinitas Community Garden (Trinitas Hospital)

Fanwood

  • Fanwood Borough Hall Pollinator and Butterfly Garden

New Providence

  • New Providence Community Garden

Plainfield

  • Planting Seeds Community Garden #1 (located at Mt. Zion AME Church)
  • Richmond Towers Garden Club
  • Grace’s Community Garden (located at Grace Episcopal Church)

Roselle

  • East 1st Avenue Garden (Community Access Unlimited)
  • BT and Diane Mathis Garden (Roselle Department of Recreation)

Scotch Plains

  • Brunner Children’s Garden (Howard B. Brunner School)
  • Scotch Plains-Fanwood Community Garden (located on the grounds of Frazee House)

Summit

  • Mary Reinhart Stackhouse Education Center Children’s Garden (Reeves-Reed Arboretum)

Union Township

  • Union Township Community Garden (located at Eleanor R. Erickson Park)
  • WISE Center Branch Community Garden (Gateway Family Y)

Westfield

  • Westfield Food Pantry (Holy Trinity Church)

The Union County community garden movement is also supported by community organizations and private sector partners, and it has even attracted state and federal interest.

The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection has partnered with Groundwork through the More PEAS permaculture initiative, resulting in the construction of more than 100 new community garden beds in Elizabeth earlier this month.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Conservation Resource Service has also begun to partner with Groundwork in of support Union County community gardens. The agency traditionally provides assistance to rural farmers. Its interest in Union County is part of a new initiative to reach urban farmers and community gardens.

Rounding out the community garden picture in Union County is the Rutgers Master Gardeners Demonstration Garden. Located by the County’s Trailside Nature and Science Center, the garden has donated thousands of pounds of fresh produce for local food pantries and offers a variety of community education programs.

The Master Gardeners is an all-volunteer organization run by the Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Union County and supported by the Freeholder Board, as part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s national Extension system.

For quick links to Union County environmental programs and more information about the Union County Extension, visit The Green Connection.

For all Union County programs and services visit ucnj.org, call the Public Info Line, 877-424-1234, email info@ucnj.org or use the online Contact Form.

 

 

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Elizabeth

Upcoming Events

Wed, February 21, 6:00 PM

Vauxhall Library, Vauxhall

Club Teen: Painting Class

Arts & Entertainment Education

Wed, February 21, 7:00 PM

Congregation Beth Israel, Scotch Plains

Course on Biblical Interpretation Taught by ...

Education Religions And Spirituality

Union County Freeholders Partner in Two Upcoming Hiring Events

February 17, 2018

ELIZABETH, NJ – The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders have announced two hiring event opportunities coming up with Griswold Home Care of Union County and the United Airlines “Summer Assist” youth program.

The first event is with Griswold Home Care of Union County. They are a privately owned, non-medical home care company and are looking for Certified Home Health Aides ...

“Hidden in Plain Sight” - A Presentation Centered Around a Teen’s Bedroom 

ROSELLE, NJ - Elizabeth Parents, grandparents, caregivers, when it comes to your children and drugs, do you know where to look? Do you know what you are looking for? You may be surprised at what is "Hidden in Plain Sight."

The Roselle Everett Hatcher Prevention Coalition and Prevention Links invite all parents, grandparents, caregivers, teachers and other adults from the city of ...

Summit resident Nancy King will be honored with a Lifetime Service Award from Elizabeth Organization

ELIZABETH, NJ - Summit resident Nancy King will be honored with a Lifetime Service Award as Family and Children’s Services of Elizabeth, celebrates its 125th anniversary, hosting the organization's sixth annual Red Carpet Party March 1, at Canoe Brook Country Club.

King is the founder and benefactor of "Nancy’s Place," a Covenant House ...

At Westfield High School, Student Says ‘It’s Almost Normal to Juul Here’

February 16, 2018

Editor’s note: This story about the rise in teen e-cigarette use, written by Westfield High School student Greta Frontero, originally ran in the Jan. 8 edition of WHS student newspaper Hi’s Eye.

WESTFIELD, NJ — A 12th-grade Westfield High School female said she doesn’t bring her Juul to school, but will use someone else’s if the opportunity ...

Another Holiday, Another Encounter with Marine Life along Jersey Shore

February 19, 2018

SPRING LAKE, NJ — In neighboring Spring Lake, a baby seal made its way onto the beach near the north end pavilion early this afternoon.

Photographer Nancy Orlowski discovered the harbor seal pup near the jetty situated just south of the pavilion on Ocean Avenue at Ludlow Avenue.

The seal’s Presidents Day appearance on February 19 comes one day after a whale was spotted off the ...

Democratic Party Would Be Making a Big Mistake by Not Recognizing Colleen Mahr's Talents

February 19, 2018

Dear Editor:

Mayor Colleen Mahr has been a valuable friend to the Township of Cranford. Whether it’s offering advice and assistance during devastating flood cleanup, supporting the Mayor's Council on the Rahway River, or her insight and assistance in meeting our affordable housing obligations, Mayor Mahr is always there for Cranford.

Colleen’s fairness and integrity is ...

'What Stays' exposes family secrets and lies

‘What Stays’ exposes family secrets, resentment and lies

By Liz Keill

SUMMIT, NJ – In an original play by Laura Ekstrand and Jason Szamreta, the Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre has provided an enlightening, funny and heart-felt view of family foibles.

Ekstrand has said that the germ of the play came from conversations with the ensemble members of the troupe, based on ...

Mintz & Geftic Secures Class Certification for Drivers in Wage and Hour Case

February 16, 2018

Is your employer failing to pay you time and a half for working more than 40 hours/week?

Is your employer misclassifying you as an independent contractor rather than an employee to avoid paying overtime premium pay?

These are some of the allegations being made by the plaintiffs and their attorney Bryan Mintz, of Mintz & Geftic LLC, against Big City Automotive and its ...