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TGP… Amazing Starts

It was a year ago that my wife Kristi and I first began thinking about this project. We had been talking for months about projects we might work on together. It had been four months since Kristi closed down her catering business, That Brown Girl Catering, for good. In the years prior to closing TBGC, she’d been working diligently to find ways decrease the impact her business had on the environment. Even before the city made it mandatory she began introducing compostable containers and utensils into her workflow and created as system for reducing and managing her food waste. At the same time I began to pursue my interest in environmental journalism. In 2007 I was invited to be a fellow with the Metcalf Institute Environmental Reporting. The fellowship would require me to be study for nine month and spend another year with a news organization on the east coast. With a child on the way the timing wasn’t ideal. So two years later as Kristi and I began throwing around project ideas, The Garden Project was a natural.
The concept for The Garden Project started out simply enough, we imagined a web-based project utilizing short webisodes, a blog and few of our friend experimenting with urban gardening and documenting our successes and failures. The idea quickly evolved, however, and the current model for TGP began to emerge. We quickly connected our personal experiences with making a healthy lifestyle an intentional choice and trying to introduce organic produce into our daily lives with the broader health and economic challenges facing the African American community. It quickly became clear that we had an opportunity to address these larger issues in a proactive way. Thus The Garden Project in its current form was born.
It has been an amazing journey getting the project off the ground over the course of the past year. Support from the community has been, and continues to be tremendous. Some amazing people have signed on to bring their passion, energy, expertise and knowledge to this effort. As the site evolves I hope you take the opportunity to become acquainted with the participating families, garden coaches and health professionals without whom this project would not be possible.
It seems like we have come so far, and yet with a project of this nature there is still a lot of work to be done before we create something that will truly be of benefit to the community. Gathering our amazing team was the first step. This website is the second. Our project is rooted in the community. It is nourished by the personal relationships that people make with one another around food, nature and the chance to share with one another. Even with this very ‘organic’ soul, it is the possibilities of the internet that make sharing those connections even more accessible. As the project progresses and our families, gardeners and health professional share their experiences, the site will become more active. We want all of you in the broader community to feel that this is a space for you as well. Don’t hesitate to reach out and interact with anyone involved in the project here on the site. The project will be all the richer if you do.
We are looking forward to an amazing journey. We hope you will be there with us the project grows and flourishes.

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