March 26, 2019
The 2019 growing season is off to a great start at Share the Harvest community garden in downtown Courtenay. On March 25, 2019, Courtenay Mayor Bob Wells, Council members and leaders at LUSH Valley Food Action Society signed a five-year ‘Share the Harvest Community Garden’ partnership agreement. The agreement ensures The City’s financial and in-kind support in exchange for LUSH Valley’s coordination and maintenance of the gardens over the next five years.
Established in 2013 at the corner of 6th Street and Harmston Avenue, the Share the Harvest Community Garden provides allotment plots and common gardens, mentorship for new gardeners, and various workshops that support people in learning how to grow food using ecologically sound techniques. The garden is also a safe and nurturing place where families and individuals who do not have access to garden space can grow food for themselve and/or their community. In 2018, the garden hosted 44 community events including work-parties, workshops, and community meetings, built 10 new garden beds, and engaged the community in 709 volunteer hours.
“This is a game changer for us,” says Maurita Prato, Executive Director of LUSH Valley. “This agreement provides us with certainty over the next five to10 years, and the validation that The City supports sustainable food programs in our community. This agreement will help ensure that we provide a welcoming, attractive and safe space that showcases healthy community living.”
The agreement provides LUSH Valley with a five-year lease and annual financial support of $10, 000, with the possibility of renewal for an additional five-year term in 2024. The City will also be working with LUSH Valley on tool storage solutions.
Courtenay Mayor Bob Wells says the community partnership between LUSH Valley and the City has brought life and productivity to an underused property in a central location. “We were happy to renew the lease agreement with LUSH Valley so they can continue their good work in the garden,” said Wells. “This project helps support food security in the Comox Valley and provides opportunities for education and healthy, low cost activities for our residents.”
Looking for a garden plot or want to volunteer? The Share the Harvest Community Garden Coordinator will be starting on April 1st and may be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org To learn more, like and follow ‘Share the Harvest Community Garden’ and ‘LUSH Valley Food Action Society’ on Facebook or visit www.lushvalley.org