The City of Miami Gardens (CMG) is collaborating with Project Grow on the Million Gardens program, an effort to reduce poor health outcomes by engaging community residents in gardening. As a participant in the Million Gardens initiative, CFCE is teaching youth in foster care how to plant and maintain their own vegetable gardens.
In 2014, CMG residents rated unhealthy eating as the second greatest health problem in Miami Gardens. They actually ranked poor nutrition as the greatest problem facing children and obesity as the greatest problem facing older adults. Residents also identified a lower number of access points of affordable healthy foods, and the high cost of health foods in the top five access/affordability issues.
Project Grow is just one of many ways that the CMG, through its Live Healthy Miami Gardens (LHMG) initiative, is working to address the community’s concerns. As a member of LHMG, CFCE joined the Million Gardens program in order to expose youth in care to the benefits of growing and consuming fresh fruit and vegetables. We hope that this effort will teach our youth to appreciate the benefits of eating wholesome, nutritious food. As part of the initiative, our young gardeners have access to a Master Gardener who is available to provide guidance throughout the growing season. Project Grow encourages all gardeners to post periodic photos of their gardens.