Grow it Green Morristown

Address

14 Maple Ave.
Morristown, NJ 07960
County: Morris
http://www.growitgreenmorristown.org

Contact

Mrs. Abigail R. Gallo

Grant Amount

$20,000

Program Area

Morristown

Focus

Grant Details

To support the organization

Organization Background

In March 2009, three Morristown residents came together creating Grow It Green Morristown. Grow It Green Morristown's mission is to create sustainable farms and gardens that provide equal access to fresh, local food and educate communities through programs focused on healthy eating and environmental stewardship.

In Spring of 2009, the Early Street Community Garden (ESCG) opened on the site of a littered, vacant lot. Today the garden is a community hub. With over 100 families on a wait list, the popularity of the program is self-evident, but was solidified with the preservation of the garden in 2012. Last fall, we launched the Grow Early Capital Campaign to re-build the garden based on input from a series of stakeholder meetings with the community. The new garden will include substantially more garden beds, a new public park, a solar classroom pavilion and demonstration rain-garden area. We're still raising funds, but expansion construction has already begun.

In 2010, GIGM created New Jersey's largest public school garden: the Urban Farm (UF). We've had thousands of student visits there, teaching children about fresh food, nutrition, community engagement and environmental responsibility. The farm donates vast amounts of produce to our schools and food pantries. Our CSA and farm stand sales are highly successful; moving UF toward self-reliance. In 2013 GIGM doubled the size of the farm with corporate support.

The organization has continued to grow in its own capacity as well. Our Executive Director, Abby Gallo, just completed her first year overseeing the day-to-day operations of the organization, freeing up the Board of Directors to focus on board development and strategic planning. Our Director of Agriculture & Education, Shaun Ananko, continues to work with student and volunteer groups, managing all aspects of the Urban Farm and now the Early Street Community Garden. This November, we promoted our part-time Office Assistant, Lauren McTigue, into a full-time Outreach & Agriculture Coordinator role. We also employed one intern and three high school students this summer, and a full-time FoodCorps Service Member.

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