You might be surprised to hear that community gardens have been credited with an array of beneficial outcomes for participants, particularly individual and community health and well-being. Community gardens influence so many aspects of health, including mental health and physical well-being. Individuals can benefit from the physical activity involved in gardening and from having access to fresh, cheap produce on a regular basis.
Building a Healthy Northborough worked with Eagle Scouts Mike Strickland and Mike Ryan, along with 40 other scouts, to build 30 community gardens on Valentine Road, a piece of land owned by the Parks and Recreation Commission. These gardens provide residents the opportunity to learn more about their natural environment and to appreciate the nutritional value of fresh food.
In addition to increased physical activity from gardening and increased consumption of healthy foods, the gardeners have increased socialization. They have created a community amongst themselves, going so far as to set up a Facebook page where they can share tips and get to know each other. They also provide recipes through community recipe boxes that provide instructions on how to cook, bake, or prepare the vegetables they cultivate.