As I read this article to Michael we didn't know whether to shout and scream (from hope/excitement) or cry (because of the beauty of one community and the vision of two women). I mean seriously how can a title like this:
British town grows all of its own vegetables,
witnesses improved civic life and reduced crime as a result.
not do something to you?
All we could think of is that - why not Scottsdale, why not the whole Phoenix valley and why not the city you live in? If Mary Clear, a grandmother of ten, had vision to change her community by building community through her program called Incredible Edible - then why can't we?
I know that some of this is happening, but we think and so do those we talk with - that it's just not enough to turn things around.
So, what IF there was this uprising (of sorts) of young (and older) people who understood that one of the best ways forward isn't just sustainability on an individual basis, but to go beyond that and begin installing fruit and vegetable gardens EVERYWHERE.
What IF every police station, fire station, city hall, library and every schools (and we applaud our friends at My Farmyard for their part in school gardens) had raised beds of food (to give away).
The message of IE is to "experiment and take action", to "get involved", and "feel empowered". They are inspiring people to do more locally (and I know this is happening to a degree), do more learning, more teaching, more asking, more planting, more growing and (I love this one) to more cooking.
The article here states this: Fresh herbs, succulent greens, and tasty fruits can be found growing near civic buildings, college campuses, supermarket parking lots, and various other places. Small garden plots, raised planting beds, and even small soil strips in these areas can be found brimming with fresh produce, all of which are free to anyone who want it, and at any time.
It is all part of a program called Incredible Edible, which was founded by Mary Clear, a local grandmother of ten, and Pam Warhurst, former owner of a local restaurant in town known as Bear Cafe. The duo had a shared goal of making Todmorden the first town in the UK to become completely self-sufficient in food -- and their endeavors have been successful.
Pretty exciting if you ask us. So, how should we begin?