More than just a name

 

 

     
More than just a name
August 19, 2009

Fresh veggies from the newly named Grassmere Garden of Health are available at the front reception of the Oshawa Community Health Centre.


By Lindsey Cole
The Oshawa Express

What’s in a name? For the newly named garden at the Oshawa Community Health Centre, it
means everything. Recently, the official opening and naming of Oshawa’s newest community
garden took place, and with it came a perfectly suited name. The Grassmere Garden of Health, as it has been newly tagged, is a community garden in the backyard of the Oshawa Community Health Centre. Of the 52 names that came pouring in for the Name the Garden Contest, it was Chantal Kelly’s that was selected. The name couldn’t be a better fit as
the centre itself is located on 115 G r a s s m e r e Avenue and it fits the mission statement of the centre, says Ana Pacheco-Rye, a health promoter with the Oshawa Community Health Centre.“It was quite neat,” she says, adding a wooden plaque now commemorates the
name. The garden itself is a partnership with GL Roberts Collegiate Vocational Institute and the Oshawa Seniors Club and it is truly one of a kind, says Pacheco-Rye.“We are amazed with it. We’re extremely surprised how beautiful things are.” GL Roberts horticultural students got the ball rolling with the garden when they planted seedlings and began to watch them grow.
Now members, patients and participants of the centre’s programs can have access to a bountiful garden rich with vegetables and plants. Some of these vegetables are also picked and displayed at the front reception for anyone to enjoy.“I think we gave out 15 to 20
pounds of veggies,” Pacheco-Rye says of the naming event.

This garden is unique as it does not rent out plots but has everyone working together to reap the rewards, says Pacheco-Rye. According to Lee Kierstead, the executive director of the centre, the garden was key to the planning process of the new facility. The idea behind the garden was to improve the physical, emotional and social well-being of those who use the centre.“It gives a sense of ownership,” Pacheco-Rye adds.“It’s like, ‘wow, I’m helping grow this.’” She also says the community has been very supportive of the project, with everyone taking care of the garden.“The only vandalism we get is from the birds and squirrels.”

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