Establish an ADA accessible community garden in Marlborough Village that connects Marlborough youth with community elders, Metro Patrol police officers, and programs at the Marlborough community center to provide mentorship, increase healthy food access, and create a safer community. Community elders can work with youth to pass on wisdom and time honored traditions while both exercising active living and growing food to take home. Creating new partnerships with Marlborough Manor and Pathway Academy could provide expanded programming for current community assets.
Metro Patrol police officers could work with Marlborough children through programs like D.A.R.E., revitalizing vacant land into a productive garden site and working together from planting through harvest. This mentorship program could address crime and drug use, build positive relationships between youth and law enforcement, and create a stronger sense of safety in the neighborhood.
Youth programs, art classes, and hunger relief programs at Marlborough Community Center could incorporate their learning and creative expression in the garden, and could incorporate the harvest into healthy snacks and contributions to healthier home cooked meals. Program participants could build social connections and entrepreneurial skills by celebrating garden activities during the Marlborough Village signature event, and selling surplus produce at the Marlborough farmers market.
Additional information to implement this opportunity below:
- Develop partnerships between the Healthy Food Leadership network, Marlborough Community Center, and Metro Patrol. Identify core program participants
- Identify a site within Marlborough Village for the community garden and obtain access or acquire ownership of the site.
- Develop a work plan for site development and programming. Apply for funding to support the effort.
- Continue to build partnerships and recruit community participation. Once funding is obtained, implement the program work plan and develop the community garden site.
Champions and their roles:
Champions from the Healthy Foods Leadership Network focused on food production and education could lead this effort, engaging community leaders from the Growers Network and the Education Campaign to champion the program.
Jackson County DARE could partner with the Metro Patrol division of the Kansas City Police Department and the Healthy Foods leadership network to develop a youth mentorship program at the community garden. Primary contact: Sargent Darrel Rocker
Kansas City Community Gardens is a not-for-profit organization that provides self-help and educational assistance to low-income people, children and community groups in the metropolitan area to grow their own food from garden plots located in backyards, vacant lots, schoolyards and at community sites.
Get Growing Kansas City is a partnership between Kansas City Community Gardens, Cultivate KC, and Lincoln University Cooperative Extension that supports Kansas City gardens and farms through technical assistance, workshops, presentations, networking and mini-grants. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 816-226-7979 to connect to a team member.
Marlborough Manor senior housing
Pathway Academy public charter school, grades K-6
Funding sources or supportive programs:
COMBAT funding could support a mentorship program for Metro Patrol officers to work alongside Marlborough youth through a community garden program.
Get Growing KC Mini-Grants one-time grant opportunities for up to $3,000. Contact Get Growing KC to learn more.
Coordinate with the Marlborough Healthy Food Leadership network to include this project in overall funding applications for Marlborough healthy food priorities. Diane Hershberger and Aimee Alderman are the co-champions of this network. The Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City and Menorah Legacy Foundation’s Healthy for Life program are ongoing funding sources that support this kind of work.