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Category — Horticulture Therapy

Meet the refugee farmers of Cleveland who are actually making America great again

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The politicians at the Republican National Convention like to depict refugees as terrorists and a danger to American society. But if they took a short trip to the farm, they could get a very different perspective.

By Casey Tolan
Fusion
July 21, 2016

Excerpt:

On the Republican National Convention stage, refugees have been a popular punching bag. Rudy Giuliani said Syrian refugees could be “operatives who are terrorists, who are going to come to Western Europe and here and kill us.” Ted Cruz claimed that the Obama administration was “admitting ISIS terrorists as refugees.”

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July 22, 2016   No Comments

Seattle’s International Rescue Committee is helping local refugees rebuild their lives

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The families who use the garden come from Bhutan, Burma, Nigeria, and Laos.

By John Sharify
King K5
July 14, 2016

Excerpt:

“It’s something they grew in Bhutan. It’s not just a green. It’s a piece of home,” says Tyler George-Minette, New Roots Coordinator for the International Rescue Committee for Seattle and Sea Tac.

The Namaste Community Garden he oversees serves the refugee community in the area. The families who use the garden come from Bhutan, Burma, Nigeria, and Laos.

“Each family gets one plot,” says Dal Diyali, who moved to the area from Bhutan.

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July 18, 2016   No Comments

Canada: Prison Farms Shut Down By Harper Government May Be Reopened By Liberals

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Pat Kincaid poses for a portrait in Kingston, Ont., on Friday July 8, 2016. Kincaid served 4 1/2 years at the Frontenac Institution where he cared for 120 animals as part of the prison farm. (Photo: Lars Hagberg/CP)

In addition to helping the inmates develop a good work ethic, the farms produced food that was used to feed the prison population as well as supply local food banks, and also helped the local economy as it generated the need for fertilizer, equipment and other supplies, said Peters.

By Diana Mehta
The Canadian Press
07/11/2016

Excerpt:

Pat Kincaid credits the dairy cows on a now-shuttered prison farm in Ontario with teaching him the skills he needed to break a life-long cycle of crime and incarceration.

The 65-year-old Kingston, Ont., resident, who has spent a total of 35 years behind bars for assaults, thefts and other property crimes, hopes other inmates get the chance to benefit from a program the federal Liberal government is now considering reopening.

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July 14, 2016   Comments Off on Canada: Prison Farms Shut Down By Harper Government May Be Reopened By Liberals

Community Garden helps Young Mums grow in Victoria, Australia

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youmumL-R: Stacey Horsfall-Rodda, Leyvi, Jet, Regae Gordan and Ash Lanko hope to harvest herbs and vegetables by spring.

“Staff from the horticulture department came along to teach us about soil preparation, watering, fertiliser and the risks and hazards of working in a garden such as wearing hard shoes and keeping our kids buckled in their prams,” Ash says.

By Doseda Hetherington
Swinburne University of Technology
June 27, 2016

Excerpt:

Members of Swinburne’s award-winning Young Mums Program are ready to turn the first sod on their own community garden and plan to harvest beans, chives, parsley and thyme this spring.

Designed and built by the students as part of the program offering a Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL) to mothers aged 15-20 years at Swinburne’s Croydon campus, the garden is an extension of a study program helping young women take control of their lives.

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July 1, 2016   Comments Off on Community Garden helps Young Mums grow in Victoria, Australia

Ottawa: Angelina Singson says her community garden plot is better than therapy after escaping domestic violence

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Ottawa’s Interval House helped more than 270 women and children escape abuse last year.

By Emma Jackson
Metro
Jun 26 2016

Excerpt:

Angelina Singson kneels in her community garden plot, planting summer squash in a crooked row beside an overgrown fence.

Like her vegetables, this is where Singson thrives: in the garden, making things grow.

“Why should I go to therapy, when I get free tomatoes from the garden?” she said. “You work it, you feel like you’ve accomplished something. There’s no better therapy than that.”

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June 30, 2016   Comments Off on Ottawa: Angelina Singson says her community garden plot is better than therapy after escaping domestic violence

Immigrant students dig into learning English at Halifax urban farm

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redhalifNew Canadian students at Citadel High School are learning English while working on an urban farm. Many of the students arrived from Syria this winter and are connecting with their new community by volunteering at Common Roots Urban Farm. See video on the site.

“They love Canada, they understand that they are here to have another chance and they are really thankful,” said Majaess.

By Alexa MacLean
CBC
June 7, 2016

Excerpt:

“The kids are coming once a week to help out and be involved. It’s great because so many of them have a farming background,” Melrose said.

The urban farm opened up in 2012 on the former site of Queen Elizabeth High School.

Part of the produce grown by the students is donated to the food bank.

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June 13, 2016   Comments Off on Immigrant students dig into learning English at Halifax urban farm

How a Rooftop Garden, Local Farming Helped One Hospital Boost Patient Satisfaction

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hosrofKerry Gold, head of dining services and chef for New Milford Hospital, stands next to an aeroponic tower, one of several in a rooftop garden at the hospital on Tuesday.
Photo: Carol Kaliff / Hearst Connecticut Media.

New Milford Hospital in Connecticut champions food as preventive medicine through homegrown meals.

By Genevieve Diesing
Hospitals and Health Networks
June 6, 2016

Excerpt:

With a focus on seasonal, unprocessed food and a classically trained chef at the kitchen’s helm, New Milford’s menu resembles that of a chic, farm-to-table restaurant rather than a typical hospital cafeteria: The vegetable dish will depend on what was picked from its rooftop garden that day, or what it received from the nine local farms from which it regularly sources ingredients. The finished product is a healthful menu (a typical dessert is a chickpea chocolate cake, for instance) that New Milford’s patients, staff and community have come to love.

“Often, patients will be discharged, and will ask if they can stay for lunch,” says Chef Kerry Gold.

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June 12, 2016   Comments Off on How a Rooftop Garden, Local Farming Helped One Hospital Boost Patient Satisfaction

Mulberry Diaries: Tales of Urban Farming

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firfruitFirst Fruits (from Landscapes and Interiors, 1899) Édouard Vuillard. Click on image for larger file.

A licensed psychotherapist in Los Angeles unwinds in her garden

By Tara Fass
Huffington Post
May 31, 2016

Excerpt

Ultimately, urban farming is a good hobby and break from my profession. What better way to unplug, to ritualize growing with companion and pooch in tow. Berries ripen in bursts and when they do picking can be done at least twice a day. The subtle pop as the ripened fruit gently falls into one’s palm is exciting beyond imagination. Searching the leaves for fruit, I better understand a hunter’s delight.

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June 4, 2016   Comments Off on Mulberry Diaries: Tales of Urban Farming

The real value of urban farming. (Hint: It’s not always the food.)

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The environmental benefits of urban farming get even more complicated when we consider indoor “vertical farms,” which are often touted as a sustainable option that use less soil and water. Although designs differ, some of these set-ups can use an enormous amount of energy, especially if they require artificial lighting.

By Brad Plumer
VOX
May 16, 2016

Excerpt:

“It’s hard to make sweeping generalizations here,” Santo told me. When designed right, urban farms can make some modest but valuable improvements to the sustainability of our food system. But when designed poorly, they can end up being even worse for the environment — say, if they’re using fertilizer inefficiently and polluting nearby waters with nitrogen run-off.

In our conversation, Santo mentioned one feature of urban farms that often gets shortchanged in dry policy discussions: “They can reconnect people with how to grow food.”

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May 22, 2016   Comments Off on The real value of urban farming. (Hint: It’s not always the food.)

A Review Of The Benefits And Limitations Of Urban Agriculture

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Vacant Lots To Vibrant Plot

By Raychel Santo Anne Palmer Brent Kim
John Hopkins Centre for Liveable Future
May 2016
(Must see. Mike)

Excerpt:

Recommendations for framing the merits of urban agriculture.

Urban agriculture should be evaluated for the multifaceted nature of its outcomes – social, health, environmental, and economic – and not merely for its potential outputs in terms of food production or economic development measures.

The list below offers a number of evidence-based talking points for advocates seeking to advance urban agriculture policy and programs:

1) Urban agriculture’s most significant benefits center around its ability to increase social capital, community well-being, and civic engagement with the food system.

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May 9, 2016   Comments Off on A Review Of The Benefits And Limitations Of Urban Agriculture

Urban farm gives fresh start to youth and homeless in Christchurch, New Zealand

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chrzCultivate Christchurch hopes to scale up in the coming months after gaining access to two larger sites.

“As a young person, it’s really hard to get into employment if you don’t have either the networks or qualifications or haven’t had to practice those skills,” Stewart said.

By Alice Cannet
The Press
April 25 2016

Excerpt:

One of Cultivate’s volunteers had been out of work and education for seven years before joining the group.

She had since put spent nearly 100 hours in the garden in the last three months and was studying horticulture at the National Trades Academy.

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April 28, 2016   Comments Off on Urban farm gives fresh start to youth and homeless in Christchurch, New Zealand

Toronto: Bell Manor Community Garden users talk about the benefits of growing in a ‘magical place’

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Welcome to Bell Manor Community Garden.

Stonegate Community Health Centre releases video in support of their food efforts

Etobicoke Guardian
Apr 23, 2016

Excerpt:

“Many of our residents live on fixed or low incomes. Providing the opportunity to grow their own fresh, healthy food is often a necessity, not a luxury,” Julia Graham, Stonegate CHC’s community food program co-ordinator, said in a statement.

In recent years, the garden has come to serve an even greater need, as the nearby Valu-Mart, which provided the only walkable access to fresh food in the community, was closed two years ago to make way for condominiums.

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April 27, 2016   Comments Off on Toronto: Bell Manor Community Garden users talk about the benefits of growing in a ‘magical place’

Tomatoes and Google connect a Canadian urban farmer to new Syrian neighbour

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‘This is straight out of Star Trek,’ says urban farmer Curtis Stone about translated encounter

“It’s amazing how urban gardening and urban agriculture really connects people, because food crosses all cultural and language barriers.”

By Lisa Johnson
CBC News
Apr 12, 2016

Excerpt:

Then the man opened Google Translate, an app that provides two-way speech translation.

“I am a tomato farmer from Syria,” the man said, through his phone.

“I was stoked and I said, ‘oh, you like tomatoes?'” said Stone, who invited his new neighbour into his greenhouse.

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April 16, 2016   Comments Off on Tomatoes and Google connect a Canadian urban farmer to new Syrian neighbour

India: Urban farm in Navi Mumbai grows food for patients

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An aerial view of the urban farm at the medical facility in Navi Mumbai.

“The not-for-profit, through its project, has provided the medical facility fresh organic vegetables that are grown without using chemical fertilisers.”

By Badri Chatterjee
Hindustan Times Mumbai
Apr 11, 2016 0

Excerpt:

Three years ago, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) set out on a green mission to convert a one-acre barren land on the campus of a medical research facility in Navi Mumbai into an organic farm.

The once-barren plot is now grows herbs, vegetables plants and fruit trees, which are fed to patients undergoing treatment at the facility. This urban farm is also home to more than 80 species of birds and 25 species of butterflies and moths.

The NGO, Green Souls, has ever since been promoting urban farming to city dwellers, who are encouraged to grow food on building terraces, balconies and small plots of land.

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April 15, 2016   Comments Off on India: Urban farm in Navi Mumbai grows food for patients

Individuals, organizations grow fresh produce to donate to food pantries in Columbia, Missouri

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Director of Urban Farming Carrie Hargrove gives a tour March 10 at the Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture. CCUA has partnered with The Food Bank to increase the amount of produce available to low-income community members. Nick Schnelle/Tribune.

“One square foot over the course of a season can produce several heads of lettuce, several pounds of carrots and several pounds of green onions,” Hargrove said.

By Caroline Dohack
Columbia Tribune
Sunday, March 20, 2016

Excerpt:

“You hear of gardeners during the summer leaving zucchini on neighbors’ doorsteps. It can come so fast and it can be hard to keep up with. It hurts to see that go to waste,” Hargrove said. “If you’re a good gardener or even just a kind-of-good gardener, you will get so much produce that you will want and need to share it. It might as well share with people who would really appreciate it.”

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March 25, 2016   Comments Off on Individuals, organizations grow fresh produce to donate to food pantries in Columbia, Missouri