Suburban Chicago is getting greener. In addition to our own occasional gardening volunteer projects, HandsOn Suburban Chicago has been honored to come alongside other organizations that promote healthy eating, environmental responsibility, and nutrition education.
For example, Libertyville-based Lambs Farm has had annual Holiday Craft Show, Breakfast with Santa, and Father’s Day Brunch, where volunteers can help with gardening or food service to support the Lambs Farm mission of helping people with disabilities live independently. SmartFarm in Barrington supports local food pantries with thousands of pounds of donate fresh produce.
We’re always happy to recruit volunteers for these great causes.
It is exciting to see the mission of health education through Hands On gardening projects spreading to Glen Ellyn, where Tina Koral, owner of a landscape design firm, has founded her own grassroots project, GardenWorks DuPage. The organization will help families grow their own garden at home and learn the basics of gardening and have more access to fresh organic produce. The project is close to its $2,000 fundraising goal, and hopes to build 10 new gardens this coming spring acccording to Glen Ellyn Patch. They will also be looking for volunteers to sponsor the gardens and monitor the progress of the gardens.
For the dedicated gardeners, a greenhouse is one option to consider. But greenhouses are often expensive to keep open, as Oak Park’s Park District is learning. Their own greenhouse at the Cheney Greenhouse Mansion is being looked at by a volunteer committee to determine if enough money could be raised to remodel the greenhouse and reopen it as an educational center. The Park District board will consider funding options on February 7th, according to the Journal of Oak Park and Riverforest.
For those who love fresh fruits and vegetables, there’s no end to volunteer opportunities. Anything from serving on a volunteer committee at your local Park District, to helping families grow their home gardens, to digging into the dirt yourself, anyone can get their hands dirty.
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