COLUMBUS (WCMH) — A non-profit that started with a mission to address concerns in the community has blossomed into more.
The Miracle Garden in Linden was created in 2014 to help address concerns about policing and violence in the community. After several meetings and community feedback, the non-profit learned food insecurity was another issue among many in the neighborhood.
“We realized kids were coming to block watch meetings because they were hungry,” said Leigh Anne Word, executive director of the Miracle Garden.
That is why Miracle Garden was created: to help fill that need for people in the Linden area, especially now, in a time where the pandemic has affected so many people and families.
“We think that it is a great injustice that when it comes to food security that our urban children don’t have the opportunities like suburban children have,” Word said.
Word is hopeful this project will help get more teens and kids to join her gardening efforts to help keep kids off the streets.
“We need to do something to help our young people before it’s too late,” she said. “It is unacceptable the number of shootings that are happening in our community.”
In previous years, she said students from Ohio State would volunteer, but the pandemic changed all that. Now, as things are returning to some normalcy, she hopes more people will get involved again.
“We literally lost over 1,000 volunteers during COVID,” Word said.
Anyone is welcome to join her at any of the gardens. Normally during the weekends, her and a group of different people are at different sites.
For more on the project and how to get involved, click here.