MACHIAS — During the early phases of COVID-19, Healthy Acadia recognized that the safety protocols being adopted and necessary to help slow the spread of the virus would have a negative impact on food security and reduce access to nutritious food for a growing number of Washington County residents. Inspired by the success of community garden projects such as the Incredible Edible project in Milbridge, they reached out to community partners and local social service organizations to gauge interest in implementing a similar project in Machias.
In response, Downeast Community Partners designated Community Services Block Grant funding to contribute to the partnership with the goal of building mini gardens throughout the community using the international Incredible Edible model, which aims to bring communities together through the power of growing food, one container at a time. The community-focused project, designated Incredible Edible Machias, quickly gained momentum, with Town of Machias, Downeast Coastal Conservancy, Centre Street Congregational Church UCC and other community members joining Healthy Acadia and Downeast Community Partners in the effort to install vegetable and culinary herb gardens throughout town.
Incredible Edible Machias includes a group of volunteers and devoted gardeners that believe that together they can address inequity and hunger by building a stronger community. “By making vegetables a part of our living landscape, we create openings to ask questions: Can I eat it? Yes, when it is ripe! Can I grow this? Absolutely!,” said Regina Grabrovac, food program manager with Healthy Acadia. “These are empowering conversations to have.”
Incredible Edible Machias has signs that are posted at each community garden. If you see the sign, feel free to harvest food, pick a weed or water the garden. The produce from these gardens is free for everyone.
Public gardens are currently located at We Care Baby Center, Machias Chamber of Commerce, Downeast Community Partners on VIP Drive and the Centre Street Congregational Church. Installation of mini-gardens at additional locations is planned.
Do you want to learn more about getting involved? Want to build a mini garden for the community? Please reach out to Regina Grabrovac, at 207-255 3741 or firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about how you can “grow” Incredible Edible Machias!
Healthy Acadia is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that engages in a broad range of initiatives to build healthier communities and make it easier for people to lead healthy lives across Washington and Hancock counties, Maine. Learn more at www.healthyacadia.org.