The Covid–19 coronavirus pandemic requires that all of us change our normal behaviors to protect our health and to protect the health of others. State and local “Stay at Home” orders and social distancing directives have resulted in many of us being locked indoors for long hours each day. Yet even as our lives have been upended, the pandemic and quarantine have not changed one basic fact: we all still need to eat.
This pandemic has fully revealed the precariousness of our current food system pipeline. To assist members of our community supplement their diet with fresh vegetables, fruits and herbs YRCP youth at Steam Onward are expanding our FARMMACY PROJECT to include FREE SEEDS donated from the Cooperative Garden Commission. In addition for a fee our YRCP youth led TILLER CORPS will till and prep a section of your yard for gardening.
Recently awarded a grant from the National Farm to School Network, Steam Onward youth are assisting community members install edible gardens. View the YRCP COVID-19 GARDENS PHOTO GALLERY below as we add more home and community gardens.
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Home gardening offers a safe way to stay physically active, intellectually engaged, and healthy during these trying times. Consumption of fresh vegetables, fruits and herbs improves our health and strengthens our immune systems, thus increasing resistance to viruses and chronic diseases such as diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure and even some cancers.
And with children at home due to mandated school closures, gardening provides students (and lifelong learners) of all ages hands-on learning activities that reinforce and build on school curricula while reducing boredom and supporting mental health.
Whether you have a large or small yard, or even a sunny window, it’s possible to produce a number of food-producing plants and herbs. The basic requirements are soil, water, a source of nutrition like compost or fertilizers, direct sunlight for about 6 – 8 hours each day and you.
Steam Onward, the Ujaama Farming group, and #Coop Gardens, are dedicated to helping you make your home garden dreams, and related food security, a reality. Our non-profit provides gardening services to seniors and others who desire starting a home garden.
Connected to national campaigns and associated resources, we currently offer:
FREE garden and heirloom seeds.
Looking to break ground? Our TILLER CORPS will rototill an area in your yard for a garden.
Online consultation by experts in the field.
The Cooperative Gardens Commission is launching a public campaign to increase community food production in every community.
The mission of the University of Maryland Extension (UME) Grow It Eat It (GIEI) Program is to promote backyard and community food production.
Eartheasy is a family business committed to bringing you practical products & information for sustainable living.
The New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station presents how gardens are an engaging tool that meets Core Curriculum Content Standards.
The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC) is a bi-county agency serving Prince George's and Montgomery counties in Maryland with parks, recreation, and planning.
This Capital Gardens article illustrates the valuable life skills that children can learn from gardening