The Kansas Health Foundation and Kansas State University Research and Extension have awarded almost $123,000 to community garden projects in 26 Kansas communities in both urban and rural areas.
The grants, which could total up to $5,000 each, were awarded by the Kansas Community Gardens Program to help start new community gardens across the state, said Evelyn Neier, K-State Research and Extension associate extension specialist in youth development. The program has awarded a total of about $400,000 over the three-year life of the program. This is its final year.
Grants go to various types of gardens
"We awarded grants to all different types of gardens. Some are 'allotment' gardens where individuals can rent their own space, some are 'communal' spaces where produce is grown collaboratively and distributed for the good of the community, and some are a combination of both," said Neier, who is based in Wichita. "We were happy to see applications from all parts of Kansas, including small, rural communities such as Quinter and Oswego, and larger metropolitan areas like Salina, Wichita, Kansas City and Olathe.
The Root 151 Community Garden in Olathe, for example, is based at the Olathe Bible Church but will provide a place for members of the community to learn about gardening, share ideas and work together to grow food for their homes and local food pantries.
The Neosho Heights Community Garden in Oswego is a collaborative effort of the local school district, First Southern Baptist Church, K-State Research and Extension, 4-H, FFA and local citizens. Elementary students will learn about gardening and high school students will serve as volunteers.
Grant funds will be used to purchase such resources as tillers, irrigation supplies, storage sheds, site improvements and tools.
The grant recipients for 2014 are Belleville - Harvest Community Garden; Cheney – Cheney Community Garden; Derby - Oaklawn Community Garden; Dodge City - Sunflower Community Garden; Emporia - La Bonita Garden of Grace; Garden City - Finney County Master Gardeners Garden; Hiawatha - NEK-CAP Community Gardens; Horton - Kickapoo Tribe in Kansas Community Garden; Kansas City - Somali Bantu Foundation of Kansas; Lawrence - Lawrence Community Shelter Garden; Lawrence - Pearl Clark Community Garden; Linn - Linn Community Garden; Oswego - Neosho Heights Community Garden; Minneapolis - Minneapolis Community Garden; Olathe - CCC Community Garden; Olathe - Growing Together, a Community Garden at Olathe Bible Church; Ozawkie - Napoleon Boone Garden; Quinter - Corner Community Garden; Salina - Church Community Organic Garden; Topeka - Quincy Community Garden; Wamego - Wamego Community Garden; Wichita - CLASS Communal Garden; Wichita - God's Garden; Wichita - Leadership Academy Garden; Wichita - Robin Rounds Memorial Garden; and Wichita - Urban Prep Academy Community Garden.