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Emanuel UCC to make accessible community garden

Sep 7, 2021

“God planted a seed. It is beginning to sprout.”

By Phil Attinger, Highlands News-Sun

SEBRING — Home and community gardening has become a trend over the last decade, partly to beat high grocery bills, but also as a way toward a simpler life. For some, gardening is not that simple. While community gardens have taken off, people bound to wheelchairs may not find them easy to use. That’s why Emanuel United Church of Christ in Sebring has found a way to let everyone get their hands in the soil, even if they can’t reach the ground.

It’s called “Garden of Hope,” and will be ADA-accessible. The idea of a community garden had already circulated around the church, and members have already picked out a spot on the southwest corner of the property. “Early in 2020, we were trying to think of something different that our church could do,” said Steve Wills, a leader in the church’s Shepherd’s Pantry project.

That’s when No Kid Hungry reached out to the church, said Pastor George Miller. That program feeds children in schools, but has not been able to because of COVID-19, he said. “We got on their radar,” Miller said. He said the church applied for and received a $26,500 grant from No Kid Hungry and another $1,000 grant from the UCC Conference to expand their Shepherd’s Pantry program to include a community refrigerator and an ADA-accessible community garden — something anyone can use, even from a wheelchair....


Photo by: Emmanuel United Church of Christ

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