WHAT IS THE HOPE GARDEN?
The Hope Garden provides fresh produce and educational opportunities for patients in the Shalom Program at Heal the City. We have two garden sites: one on Carolina Street and one on 3rd Street, with a total of 60 raised beds. This project is a joint effort with Snack Pak 4 Kids and the High Plains Food Bank to address the nutritional needs of our patients.
WHAT DOES THE CAROLINA STREET HOPE GARDEN INCLUDE?
In partnership with the High Plains Food Bank, the Carolina Street site features 10 garden beds growing fresh vegetables, fruit, and flowers. This site serves primarily as an educational space, providing an opportunity for our patients to learn gardening techniques tailored to the Texas Panhandle climate. This space is also open to the San Jacinto neighborhood, providing a safe gathering space and a book trading depot for the neighborhood.
WHAT DOES THE 3RD STREET GARDEN INCLUDE?
This season, Heal the City is partnering with Snack Pak 4 Kids’ well-established garden site to provide a reliable source of fresh produce for our patients. This location features 50 raised garden beds, and the high productivity of this site allows us to offer this resource to more patients.
WHY A GARDEN?
73% of Shalom patients are food-insecure. This means that the majority of our patients face difficulties obtaining food that is both nutritious and affordable. Many patients make their money stretch a little further by buying cheaper food that is calorie-dense and nutrient-poor, which has direct negative impacts on both short- and long-term health.
Heal the City is committed to partnering with our patients to take care of their whole-person health. As part of our Wellness Program, Shalom patients have access to a variety of on-site nutrition resources, including:
• One-on-one consults with a registered dietician
• Nutrition classes, including some tailored for diabetes
• Cooking classes that prioritize nutrition, affordability, and accessibility
Our Hope Garden provides one more piece of this puzzle, providing fresh, healthy ingredients for patients to use in their cooking and a gardening skillset for them to grow their own vegetables at home. Pairing education with resources equips our patients to make lasting changes in their families’ diets and daily lives.
WHEN WERE THE GARDENS ESTABLISHED?
The 3rd Street Site has been established for 4 years. The Carolina site was assembled in October 2018 through the generosity of the High Plains Food Bank and an organized team of volunteers from Valero and Toot n’ Totum. Watch the video below for more information.