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1640 Good Hope Rd. SE(Anacostia)
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Founded in 1974, Bread for the City (BFC) is a front line agency serving the District’s disadvantaged populace. Our mission is to provide free comprehensive services (food, clothing, medical care, legal assistance, and social services), to DC’s low-income population in an atmosphere of dignity and respect.
To that end, our Food Program works hard to ensure that not only do we feed people’s stomachs (9,000 DC residents receive groceries from us each month), but their minds as well. We provide healthy cooking classes, and garden/ agriculture workshops, to hundreds of DC residents every year. And this spring, we are expanding these nutrition initiatives by creating a green space on our Southeast Center rooftop! Specific elements of the proposed project include:
- Designing and hanging a large banner to alert passersby to the existence of our rooftop garden
- Purchasing pots and seedlings from local hardware stores to give out to clients during our regular garden workshops
- Performing outreach via social media (our well-read blog, Twitter/Facebook accounts) as well as creating a display in the SE Center entry way that encourages clients from all of our service areas to visit the roof.
- Creating rooftop art and purchasing patio furniture to make the space colorful, comfortable, and fun.
With the completion of this project, we will have an accessible, visible, and comfortable green space on our roof that will be an educational resource on urban agriculture for the entire community.
We will complete this project by August 15, 2012. Specific steps include:
- End of June: Design a banner advertising the garden which will hang outside of the SE Center.
- End of July: Manage four garden workshops in which clients receive garden starter kits for their own homes.
- Weekly: Hold lunches on roof for clients and community members.
- Ongoing: Contact hardware stores for at-cost merchandise (pots, etc).
- Ongoing: Add artwork (murals, painted garden boxes) to the existing rooftop.
Weekly in July: Project intern writes blog updates and does outreach to advertise the garden.
- Two blog posts per month
- Creating a poster for the SE Center vestibule.
- End of July: Purchase and install patio furniture.
By August 15, we will have completed the project utilizing our well-established support staff, and still have two-three more months of growing season left to enjoy the garden.
why we're doing it
BFC’s Southeast Center is located in Wards 7 & 8—the most consistently impoverished areas of the city. High unemployment, stagnant wages, and the ongoing economic downturn have all been recent elements of what is a larger pattern of long-term neglect in these “east of the river” neighborhoods. Part of that neglect takes the form of what can be described as a “produce desert”: food is not lacking, but healthy, locally grown produce is not readily available.
Bread for the City aims to provide the necessities of life to our low-income neighbors: the basic resources that keep a person clothed, with access to medical care when needed, a roof over their heads and, of course, with a full stomach. With our rooftop garden project, however, we are striving to go further: to create community spaces for growing our own food and learning from each other.
This project doesn’t come a moment too soon. Lacking outdoor space leads to isolation in a community, as one of our clients can attest. As a senior citizen with mobility issues due to an old knee injury, she typically sees no reason to leave her home. But she comes to every garden workshop in order to enjoy the fresh air, the company of our staff and other clients, and to learn more about how to grow her own food. This type of social support is invaluable, and we aim to create more of it through the completion of this project. Adding patio furniture and artwork to the space will go a long way towards making our Southeast Center roof a place where people want to spend their time. And once they are in this space, they are more likely to attend our regular garden workshops, take home their own garden starter kits, and contribute to the local food movement themselves.
- (Target) Room Essentials™ 5-Piece Sling Patio Dining Furniture Set - Black/Tan Stripe: $269.00
- 6 foot picnic table kit (Home Depot): $98.00
- 8 jars of Blick Mural paint at $6.13 a piece: $49.04
- Banner to advertise the roof, from Sakie Designs in Silver Spring, MD: $320
- 2 (@43.45) Blue Marble Designs 40 in. Rectangular Planter Magnum: $86.90
- 10 (@ 3.97) Dynamic Design 10 in. Plastic Classic Rolled Rim Planter: $39.70
- 1 (@ 9.97) Dynamic Design 16 in. Plastic Classic Rolled Rim Planter: $119.64
Project Total: $982.28
Third party credit card processing (3%): $29.47
Total to raise: $1,011.75
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East Bay Community Foundation
Ann K. Emery