Entering its third year in 2012, Boston Is Growing Gardens (BIGG) aims to double the community garden food growing capacity in Dorchester and directly improve the health and welfare of many of its residents. Working with our partners, the City of Boston, gardeners, neighbors, local foundations and private donors, BNAN is in the process of creating a two-fold increase in the number of plots in the 17 Dorchester Community Gardens owned by BNAN.
An analysis of Dorchesterís 32 community gardens reveals significant opportunities for new gardeners in existing, expanded and new garden spaces. Through coordinated outreach, skill building and mentoring programs, BIGG works to connect Dorchester residents to these new gardening resources.
Based on BNANís recent work with immigrants and refugees, the need and interest in community gardening is growing especially strong in Dorchester, Bostonís largest neighborhood with more than 90,000 residents and home to an ever-growing immigrant population. Access to a range of translators and Boston-based immigrant and refugee organizations has provided an opportunity to identify a large population with a strong interest in growing their own vegetables as a way to use existing skills to supplement food budgets and to honor cultural traditions and communal relationships in the fresh air.
Community gardens provide a viable source of inexpensive, nutritious food, a rewarding personal experience, and regular physical activity. Community gardening is also an effective community-building strategy that contributes to neighborhood renewal, preservation, and stabilization.
Click here to download 2012 Boston is Growing Gardens (BIGG) list of gardens with plots available as of February 10, 2012 and click here to download the BIGG application form for garden plots in Dorchester and Roxbury which are included on the list.
Please contact Karen Chaffee, Stewardship Manager at BNAN at email@example.com or phone 617-542-7696 if you would like to learn more about BIGG. Individuals interested in gardening and volunteer opportunities in Dorchester are especially welcome!
DOT Grows, Dorchester's Garden Council meets the first Tuesday of each month at rotating locations in Dorchester. Gardeners, residents, and anyone else interested in creating a healthier Dorchester nieghborhood are weclome! For more information please call Karen Chaffee at 617-524-7696 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Community Garden News
Community gardener Elnora Thompson from the Nightingale Community Garden in Dorchester talks about renovations being undertaken by BNAN during US Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius's visit to Boston with Mayor Menino on July 9, 2010. Click here to view video. Click here to view photos.
The Bowdoin Street Health Center Youth Program partners with BNAN at the Norton Stonehurst Community Garden in Dorchester to bring fresh food to local residents as part of the Boston Is Growing Gardens (BIGG) project. Click here to view video one and click here to view video two.
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