AHA Resident Council Community Garden
Athens Housing Authority is a public housing agency made up of five communities, serving 239 families. The AHA Resident Council consists of all residents and elected officers. The proposed community garden would be located in Houston Court, and shared with Roberts Apartments, which is the community immediately adjacent. All AHA communities would benefit and share in the harvests of the garden. Houston Court consists of 40 units reserved for elderly and disabled, while Roberts has 52 units dedicated for singles and families.
The garden would begin with 10 raised beds of 12' x 4', for a total of 320 square feet of garden space. Future plans for the garden would include fruit bushes and trees. The vast expanse of property nestled between four buildings of Houston Court would allow for growth as needed. As shown in the accompanying pictures, there is access to water from each of the four buildings.
Although the goal of the garden is to supplement residents' menus to provide healthy and tasty fresh vegetables and fruits, there are so many more benefits that will be enjoyed. These include growing community by meeting and getting to know neighbors, encouraging physical exercise outdoors, creating relationships between older residents and youngsters who may not know the magic of gardens and fresh foods, allowing employment-aged residents a chance to fill roles of responsibility to use as skills during job searches, and the feelings of accomplishment that comes from a job well done. If the harvests are bountiful, there may even be a chance to learn some business lessons by taking any excess produce to the local farmers' market, which would be a learning experience that would run the gamut from interacting with strangers, listening to and telling stories, and maybe a small profit to reinvest in next year's garden.
KGI is a nonprofit community of over 30,000 people who are growing some of our own food and helping others to do the same.
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