In an effort to serve as a catalyst for healthy change in the right direction, The Woodlawn Organization  sponsored the “Spring Into Green Initiative.” In inner city communities like Woodlawn, the clarion call for residents to come together is ringing loud and clear.

The “Spring Into Green Initiative” is part of a collaborative partnership between The Woodlawn Organization , the Sweet Water Foundation (501)(c)(3), Cease Fire,  10 schools in the Woodlawn community, and a wide range of community organizations and community members of all ages that calls upon the self-determination of the Woodlawn community and invites all to be positive agents for change in this very predictable drama of stress, illness and disease. Over 400 community members showed up over the course of the day to support the initiative.

This initiative will serve as a long-term, multifaceted tool with the following applications:

  1. EDUCATIONAL BENEFITS:  It is an intergenerational teaching tool that the schools may use in Woodlawn for the benefit of their students.  It calls together teachers, school administrators, students and parents to learn about soil conservation, composting, agriculture, biology, chemistry, math and physics.  

  2. ARTISTIC BENEFITS:  Each project lends itself to artistic design projects, whether  they be in a mosaic sculpture, a student designed sign, a banner, a mural, a photo journal or a short film video documentary.

  3. ECONOMIC TOOL:  In a best case scenario the promise of growing fresh fruits and vegetables lends itself to the possibility of supplying farmer’s markets as well as school cafeterias with fare for retail.  In the worst case scenario families and community residents will personally benefit from the addition of fresh produce in their kitchens.

  4. PUBLIC HEALTH TOOL:  It is a public health tool / model.  Growing fresh, edible food encourages all of us to eat healthier and to be mindful of what we use to fuel our bodies.  Our poor diets are a major contributor to the poor health we experience.  Our bodies were designed to function without an over-reliance on the pharmaceutical industry to regulate our blood pressure, our sugar and to rid our arteries of plaque.  Shifting to healthy diets, rest and exercise will reward the entire community with healthier lives and longer life spans.

  5. SOCIETAL BENEFITS: Gardens promote peace, tranquility, and holistic transformation.  A project which allows for growth and yields tangible results over time teaches valuable character traits like patience and endurance.  Working with factors outside of man’s control like sun, wind and rain are also powerful teaching tools and give a new perspective to the circle of life that we all share.