Garden Leaders On the Rise!

The Gardens Project of NCO has begun an intensive Gardener Leadership Program to train community gardeners to share, organize, lead, and continue to build the movement for expanding and sustaining spaces for community and school gardens.

The Leadership Program (we're still searching for a catchy name if you've got one), began in January and brings together 24 gardeners from 11 different community and school gardens in the greater Ukiah area and Anderson Valley. We will meet every six weeks through November to teach each other greater skills in: Building Community and Communication, Effective Leadership, Accessing Resources and Hosting Work Parties, Marketing Opportunities, and Garden Advocacy.

By the end of the year long training, the participants will comprise our new Leadership Council that will continue to meet, share, plan, and advise The Gardens Project. In year two, the training will move to gardens in Northern Mendocino County (Willits, Covelo, Laytonville, Legget), and then year three on the Coast (Point Arena to Fort Bragg).

The Leadership Program is a component of NCO Community Action successfully receiving a USDA Community Food Projects grant to train community leaders in food production and work to alleviate poverty through re-building our local food system.

The gardens represented at this year's training are: Washington Community Garden, Grace Lutheran Community Garden, Anderson Valley High School Garden, Jack Simpson Senior Garden, Cleveland Lane Community Garden, Orchard Apartments Garden, Plowshares Garden, Oak Manor Elementary School Garden, Yokayo Elementary School Garden, Northern Circle Indian Housing Garden, and the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas Community Farm and newly developing school gardens. For more info, contact The Gardens Project.