Gardens at Bragaw
The Gardens at Bragaw is a community garden located in Anchorage, Alaska, in the neighborhood of Mountain View. Mountain View is one of the most diverse neighborhoods in the country. One of every four people in Mountain View lives in poverty.
In 2012, the Anchorage Community Land Trust (ACLT), a non-profit organization focusing on revitalization in Mountain View, signed an agreement with the Municipality of Anchorage to open and operate this community garden, which was constructed by the State of Alaska in 2010, but lay unused until last year. The Gardens at Bragaw were created to redevelop a blighted space in the neighborhood, and to provide a source of affordable, healthy, and culturally relevant produce. The gardens also serve as a community center; this year, 100% of gardeners said that they have made friends and gotten to know their neighbors better through community gardening.
In the spring of 2013, ACLT recruited local gardeners for the first growing season of the gardens. During the course of the gardening season, we hosted a seed starting workshop and seed swap, a composting workshop, an opening celebration for the gardens, and an end-of-season potluck, along with several gardeners’ meetings. Our gardeners have stepped up to help each other become better gardeners, have planned events at the gardens, and have helped with each of the projects we have undertaken.
Beneficiaries of the gardens include families and individuals in northeast Anchorage, many of whom come from an international background and 60% of who are new to gardening in Alaska. Children, both those living in the neighborhood and those whose parents have a plot, also benefit: two-thirds of gardeners brought their children to garden with them. The garden also benefits the wider community – on average, 7.5 people ate the produce from each garden plot this year.
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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