(Includes excerpts from the article submitted by Riverside City College and published in the January 1, 2013 Press-Enterprise)
A $1,000 donation from Calvary Presbyterian and the Wood Streets Green Team capped nearly two years of planning for a new community garden at Riverside City College that supporters hope will yield organic fruit and vegetables and provide an “outdoor lab” for students and the community. The new garden will open in the spring.
“We are excited about the creation of this community garden and very pleased with the enthusiasm and generous support from our neighbors and local businesses,” said RCC President Cynthia Azari. “Along with the new LEED certified School of Nursing and the Math and Science buildings, the community garden is another example of RCC’s commitment to environmental sustainability and community involvement. It will be an extraordinary learning environment for everyone.”
From left are: Ryan Sendejas, RCC student; Marilyn Morris; Preston Galusky, RCC faculty member; Pat Silvestri, Calvary Presbyterian member; Kamron Golbaf, RCC student; Justin Scott-Coe, of the Woods Street Green Team; Tonya Huff, RCC faculty member; and Virginia White, RCC faculty member.
Volunteer crews of students, faculty and community members are prepping the former parking lot turned garden site, located adjacent to the Math and Science building and the Library and Learning Resource Center on upper campus. College facilities staff installed a security fence and funds donated by the Associate Students of Riverside provided materials that volunteers are using to construct runoff-prevention decomposed granite pathways. Corona Tools donated more than $1,000 in contractor-grade equipment towards the effort. The donation by Calvary Presbyterian and the Wood Streets Green Team will be used to purchase fruit trees and garden benches. Other planned amenities include a gazebo that will provide shade and space for gardening workshops, as well as entrance arbors to support grape and kiwis vines.
RCC students, faculty, and community members initiated the project in order to learn, teach, and encourage sustainability through local food production and community building.
“The Green Team is thrilled to provide a return on the investment RCC has made and continues to make in our community,” said Justin Scott-Coe, a member of the Wood Streets Green Team Board of Directors and member of the Seizing Our Destiny Champions Council. “The RCC Community Garden is the first of what we hope are a number of community gardens supported through our local fundraising and partnership efforts. We thank Calvary Presbyterian for providing such a generous donation toward what will certainly be a premier community education and healthy food resource.”
As the new community garden comes on line, planners expect to schedule regular workshops focused on local gardening techniques from pruning to pest management. Once opened, the RCC garden, which features cultivation plots, will join a number of established and emerging gardens throughout the city of Riverside that participate in the Riverside Garden Council. As part of the Council, RCC will be able to help connect interested parties with gardening and volunteer opportunities throughout the city.
The RCC Community Garden demonstrates, the spirit of a unified community that comes together around common interests and concerns and showcases Riverside’s commitment to being one of the most inspiring, livable, healthy and adventurous cities to live in or visit.
For more information about the new Riverside City College community garden, or to volunteer, call 951-222-8361.
For more information on the Wood Streets Green team, click here.
To read the full article as published in the Press-Enterprise, click here.