Arkansas GardenCorps is a program of the Arkansas Children's Hospital Childhood Obesity Prevention, its mission is to promote the use of school and community gardens to increase environmental awareness and sustainable agriculture practices in Arkansas communities. GardenCorps members serve in school and community gardens across the state to develop and maintain gardens, conduct garden-based education, and build volunteer and community support for sustainability of gardens.
In 2014, the Faulkner County Urban Farm Project became an AR GardenCorps service site, and has been hosting Crystal Bowne since September. Since Crystal starting serving the garden has seen dramatic improvements in its ability to reach into the community. The garden, which used to be ran by volunteers a couple hours a week, is now staffed for three hours, five days a week. A more consistent schedule has also allowed Crystal to coordinate more activities with the library’s adult and children’s program directors, such as a children's scarecrow making activity, a seed swap, a green reader book club and a children's garden club.
Thanks to Crystal, we have been able to extend our growing season into the winter and donate more food to the St. Peter's Food Pantry (225 pounds to date!). She has also started collaborating with the Women’s Shelter of Central Arkansas, the Faulkner County Day School and the Bethlehem House to start and maintain their own gardens.
For all of these reasons and more we are looking forward to hosting another Service Member in 2015-2016 and we need your help to make that happen. The Arkansas GardenCorps program requires a $5,500 match to host a full-time service member and we have till April 6th to make our goal. Click here to help us raise funds on April 2nd through the Arkansas Gives website
For more info on Arkansas Gardencorps click here