A bit of history as to how this team came together.
In April, a few people in our community, were looking for ways they could give back, help others, and engender a more philanthropic spirit here in Langdon. We came up with the idea of growing fresh foods for our local and surrounding food banks. We called SE Rockyview Food Bank, Chestermere Food Bank as well as the Strathmore Food Bank, and they all identified a lack of available fresh foods for the people they serve. Our community, our neighbors and for some, our family and friends.
So, we approached the LCA (Langdon Community Association), to see if there might be an area in the park, that we could use to build food bank plots. The LCA was supportive of the idea and we began our search for the best spot. In the meantime, Rockyview County, suggested that one of their green spaces might be an ideal spot for a project of this nature. Given the area they were suggesting nicely buffered by two rows of residences, the team thought, “wouldn’t it be great to make this a beautiful space, with perennial gardens, trees, a children’s plot, pathways, and rows of fruit trees? Lets have garden plots available for lease, making it a sustainable space, and one the community and neighborhood could be proud of!”.
We then did our research. We visited three other community gardens and spoke to their organizers. We followed the Calgary Horticultural societies guidelines for best practices in developing community gardens, we attended conferences, we applied for non-profit status, made a website, posted our intentions through facebook, and put brochures and flyers around town. We patiently waited for the formal process of the County to lease the plot to the LCA, who then, agreed to sub lease it to the community garden team. . We were so fortunate to have a very skilled landscape designer draw out a beautiful design for us to post on our website, at the Town Hall meeting and Langdon days. We contacted persons with training in CPTED (crime prevention through environmental design) principals and we are now looking to engender sponsorship from local and surrounding businesses to help fund the project. Once we knew we had the space (phewf), it was time to get the word out to those living adjacent to the plot. We imagined that with all this planning and preparation, (including a 6 page document on how we plan on implementing the project) people would be as thrilled and excited as we are, eager to be involved, wanting to learn more on how they can have a positive impact on their community. Well, not entirely what we expected. Ouch!
What we want you to take from this is, we’re just a group of people, who want to grown some food for our impoverished neighbors, and in the meantime, make it easier, for our communities citizens, to grow their own fresh foods, make healthy choices, and live better lives.
Please, take the time to review the content on our website. The research we’ve done, all the factors we’ve considered.
Read the attached research paper on how community gardens improve property values.
Take a breath, and take some time to consider not only how this project could have a lasting positive impact for you, your family and your community, but how you, might in turn have a positive impact on this project.