The mission of Gardens for Single Moms is very simple, our goal is to help single moms grow organic, healthy food for their families and in a meaningful way alleviate the horrible reality of hunger.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, in 2016 12.3% of the U.S. population was food insecure, meaning that over 15.6 million households don’t get proper nutrition. Of those, 6.1 million households experience hunger, or as the USDA states ‘the food intake of some household members was reduced and normal eating patterns were disrupted at times during the year due to limited resources.’ As alarming as these statistics are, families headed by a single mother are food insecure almost 20% above the national average! Click here to read more.
Single parents almost by definition are short on time and resources, which is a major reason that many of these households depend on cheap, highly processed, low nutritional value foods. We understand that gardening, especially in the beginning stages, is terribly time consuming, so our first order of business is to build their gardens for them. We will clear and turn the ground, bring in all the necessary soil amendments and prepare the beds, plant the seeds, provide irrigation, then nurture the gardens throughout the summer. We also plant beneficial flowers for bees and butterflies and create habitat for other beneficial critters. And we’re planting a few fruit trees as well.
During the first season we teach the moms how to be urban/suburban gardeners by example and by providing gardening information, and we’re working to get community volunteers to help on an ongoing basis. Besides spending time in their gardens with the families we will also host a potluck and a cooking class that focuses on how to use the food from their own gardens.
Our goal this first year is to create 5-10 gardens for single moms in the Orlando, FL area. We’ve already partnered with great volunteer resources in the area, and hope to get more of the community involved. It is our hope that we can scale this project and offer our learning and guidance to other communities in the future.