Sustany Awards $600 Grant to Apollo Beach Community Gardens

Photo description:  Paula Olesen, President of the Apollo Beach Garden Club and Kitty Wallace, Sustany Board Member and President of the Tampa Bay Coalition of Community Gardens standing on the future site of the Apollo Beach Community Garden.

On November 20, 2018, the Sustany Foundation presented a $600 check to the Apollo Beach Community Garden. The grant award is part of the organization’s Seed to Sustenance Community Garden Matching Fund Grant. Lorrie Belovich, the executive director of Sustany, Andrea Cheney, a founding member and Kitty Wallace, a board member and president of the Tampa Bay Coalition of Community Gardens attended the November board meeting of the Apollo Beach Garden Club to present the check in person.

“This is actually the best part of the program,” said Belovich. “You get to see the before picture in person. It is amazing to see these currently under-utilized tracts of land and envision the future site of a community garden that will not only provide a sustainable source of fresh veggies, herbs and fruit trees but also opportunities for education and community involvement.”

The Apollo Beach Community Gardens will be established on a former mobile home plot. The garden will serve residents who currently have no access to garden space and will educate them on growing edible and Florida-friendly plants and fruit trees.

“We applaud Paula Olesen, President of the Apollo Beach Garden Club, and her board members for seeing the opportunity and coordinating with community members and the Hillsborough County Parks and Recreation Department to make their vision a reality,” said Kitty Wallace. “We hope to see many more projects like this in the Tampa Bay area. This is exactly why the Seed to Sustenance Grant Program was put in place”

Seed to Sustenance is a grant program that provides matching funds up to $600 to groups or organizations that want to start a community garden. The process is fairly simple with an on-line application but the group must be organized, have a plan and commit to following the “10 Steps to Starting a Community Garden” guidelines by the American Community Gardening Association. The Coalition of Community Gardens – Tampa Bay provides technical assistance and offers mentoring and networking with other community gardens to ensure a healthy and verdant community resource for years to come.

The Sustany Foundation is a non-profit dedicated to advancing sustainability initiatives in the Tampa Bay region and has served as the leading resource for the sustainable business community for over a decade. Through education, collaboration and impactful programs, we encourage responsible use of our natural resources to protect and preserve our unique quality of life now and in the future.