Where Can We Grow Next?

The holidays are over and the season for planning is upon us! Well, I suppose the season for planning never really ends for the board and staff members of the GardenWorks Project – although there is a healthy pause when our team shifts gears into garden build mode during the growing season. But now is the time for our team to think strategically about how we can refine our internal processes to improve upon the previous year’s successes serving our clients and communities. And since I am not as horticulturally gifted as my GardenWorks colleagues, I am happy to roll up my sleeves for some pre-season strategic planning. Continue reading

Community Gardens Accepted Now

Community Gardening Program In 2018, after a successful pilot year, we will be continuing our Community Gardening Program, and will be choosing another 5 new organizations to establish or expand a community garden in their chosen area!  Community garden organizers may apply to receive 5 raised-bed garden frames, seeds, seedlings, and support from The GardenWorks Project. Dig in and apply today! Continue reading

January News

Dear friends and supporters, Happy New Year! We have been busy preparing for the 2018 season and cannot wait to get started and look forward to seeing everyone this year.  Continue reading

December News

Dear friends and supporters, "Bless you for this program, it has been a heart desire [to garden] for years but could not afford it. I grew a wonderful garden and I got my neighbors to garden as well." - 2017 client We at The GardenWorks Project want to thank our supporters for being a part of our mission.  Your commitment to our organization is what drives us forward.  We could not do it without you.  We started in 5 gardens in 2012.  We completed 87 home gardens this year.  We have much to be proud of.   The fight against food insecurity does not stop here.  We have much to do, and your tax-deductible gift will support our 2018 programs.  Please give generously, and if you cannot give monetarily, please visit our website and consider giving your time in 2018 with our many volunteer opportunities. May your tables be full and surrounded with joy and laughter this holiday season! With much gratitude, Jeannie Iseman Executive Director   Our Founder and Board Member shared a powerful memory on the blog this month.  “She said the garden is like a bright light and adds a nice memory to this difficult day,” Julie’s brother said. The kids pointed out to their grandmother what each seedling was and she nodded and smiled. Read the full post here.      Continue reading

Memorable Build

The GardenWorks Project has installed over 200 raised bed vegetable gardens for families in DuPage County who rely on food pantries for their basic nutritional needs. I’ve participated in about 100 of them, more or less, and I’ll admit the details get a little fuzzy when I try to remember a particular garden build. But there are some I’ll never forget, and this is one of them. It was a build from our second season in the spring of 2013.    As the volunteers gathered in the street in front of the Winfield Home, I could tell something was happening. When I’d visited the home a few weeks prior to meet with the client (let’s call her Julie) and determine a good spot for the garden, there weren’t this many cars in the driveway. Were they having a party and forgot about the garden build? I quickly double-checked my email communications with Julie to ensure the date and time were correct, and sure enough, we were there at the agreed-upon time.    “Well, this is going to be awkward!” I thought as I asked the volunteers to wait at the end of the driveway while I went to the front door.  Continue reading

Together We Can Make a Difference

Dear Friends-        On November 28, The GardenWorks Project is proud to participate in Giving Tuesday. This global day of giving invites individuals to celebrate the holiday season by giving back and creating change in their communities. Together, we can make a difference for DuPage area families who struggle to afford healthy meals.   Our 2018 goal will be to build 90 new home gardens and 5 community gardens for families facing food insecurity. Last year alone, we built 87 gardens and as a result, 332 individuals received access to a GardenWorks garden! With your support, we can reach or exceed those numbers this year!     Continue reading

Mark your calendars for Giving Tuesday

Giving Tuesday, a national day of giving, will be November 28th this year!  While the garden season may be over, our board has been hard at work prepping for next year. In 2017 we built 87 gardens and look forward to matching or exceeding that number for next year. And we couldn't do it without your help! Thank you for all the time and financial support you gave in 2017 and we look forward to working with you again in 2018. Continue reading

The GardenWorks Project Announces New Executive Director

  The GardenWorks Project is thrilled to announce the selection of Jeannie Iseman as its new Executive Director. Jeannie follows founder and previous Executive Director, Tina Koral, who will now serve on the organization's board of directors.   Continue reading

ED Transition Announcement

July 14, 2017, St.Charles, IL - The GardenWorks Project announced today that it is beginning a transition of Executive Director leadership. Tina Koral, the founder and current Executive Director, will be stepping down from her position this fall. Tina will join the Board, where she will continue to provide support for the new ED, as well as help the organization with fundraising, marketing and many other activities that leverage her deep experience and relationships in the area. Continue reading

The GardenWorks Project supports area organizations with gardening supplies

In an effort to increase the number of community and school gardens in DuPage County, The GardenWorks Project has awarded five area organizations with the supplies to build raised garden beds. The award includes materials to build a 4-foot by 8-foot raised garden on the organization’s property, vegetable seeds and seedlings.   Continue reading
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