About the Winners
Introducing our 2019 Grants 4 Plants winners! We reviewed hundreds of applications from across the U.S. and were overwhelmed by the passion, creativity, and commitment of our growing herbal community (search #grants4plants on YouTube and other social media channels to view all the incredible submissions!). After careful consideration, we have selected five projects that align with our values and will have a lasting positive impact. Each winner will receive $4,000 to help bring their dreams to life. Join us in congratulating our grantees and celebrating herbal education, environmental stewardship, and our plant-loving community!
For more info about these inspiring projects, watch the full-length videos from our five winners below!
Healing Movement: Richmond High Afterschool Wellness Club
Project Description: In the Fall of 2019, Urban Tilth will expand our Urban Agriculture Academy that includes garden and education programs and a new afterschool student-driven wellness club: The Healing Movement at Richmond High School. This group addresses the needs of teenagers dealing with mental health disorders such as stress, depression, and anxiety. We want to support students in creating inner peace through working in the garden and finding ways to heal themselves with plants and art. We will hold seasonal workshops for adults and youth in the community. Through our activities, we'll create recipes for value-added products that will be sold by Urban Tilth at our community farm stands, with funds going to support our education programs and improve the sustainability of Urban Tilth.
Urban Tilth hires and trains local residents to cultivate agriculture in West Contra Costa County, California to help our community build a more sustainable, healthy, and just food system. Founded in 2005, Urban Tilth has emerged as a local leader. We farm, feed, forage, teach, train, build community, employ, and give back. Using our seven school gardens and small urban farms, we teach and employ community members to grow, distribute, cook, and consume thousands of pounds of local produce each year. Our end goal is to create a more equitable and just food system within a healthier and more self-sufficient community.
Herbal Education and Outreach
Project Description: Our current project involves no-cost herbal education through workshops at a transitional house for women and children and a women's prison. The classes seek to provide fundamental tools and allow people to care for themselves, their families, and their communities. Fostering this sense of autonomy and independence is integral to the work we do. The structure of classes is interactive and participatory with the goal of creating an inclusive space for every person to learn, contribute, and grow from each other. We believe herbalism is enriched when everyone has the opportunity to share their knowledge and story.
Hawthorn Community Herb Collective is a volunteer-run herbalism accessibility project in Asheville, North Carolina. Since 2017 we have been operating a community apothecary, offering herbal classes, a pop-up free clinic, and a foot care clinic. We also collaborate with other grassroots organizations and communities on special projects such as getting herbal medicine to people and communities in times of need. Our collective experience encompasses work with incarcerated women, community herbalism, herbal education, first aid, farming, and years of medicine making and herbal clinical services.
Emerald Village Eugene Greenhouse: Achieving Independence Through Cooperative Gardening
Project Description: MAPLE Microdevelopment is working with residents from Emerald Village Eugene (EVE) to build an on-site greenhouse, allowing the community to grow its own organic food and herbal medicine. EVE is a self-managed cooperative located in Eugene, Oregon that houses people with very low incomes, many of whom have previously experienced homelessness. MAPLE specializes in working alongside EVE residents to strengthen their financial skills and capacities, and the group will engage residents to plan and implement their own urban agriculture micro-enterprise via the greenhouse. The greenhouse will provide food for healthier diets, support income generation, and encourage community cooperation. After using their share of produce and herbs, residents will sell surplus at the Whiteaker Community Market. Sales will generate EVE income and empower residents through agricultural education, teamwork, and self-sufficiency. In addition, the larger Eugene Community will see individuals who previously experienced homelessness through an alternate lens—one that emphasizes productive, energetic, creative, and self-assured community members.
MAPLE Microdevelopment, a Eugene-based non-profit established in 2008, collaborates with unbanked communities, (internationally and locally) to establish community-managed savings funds and other tools necessary for strengthening their own financial, cultural, and ecological resilience, so they can govern themselves in accordance with their own cultural values and preserve the land on which they depend for their livelihoods.
Agaves for Bats: Educational Tools for Environmental Stewardship
Project Description: The project “Agaves for Bats: Educational Tools for Environmental Stewardship” will develop, translate, print, and distribute a bilingual booklet about agave restoration for land managers in the U.S. and Mexico. It will focus on seed collection, curation, propagation, and out-planting agaves into natural and farmed landscapes. It will also provide information about the importance of genetic diversity for the survival of agave populations, which have become threatened as production of agave spirits in Mexico has increased and brought about ecological and cultural complications. These educational tools have the power to plant seeds of environmental stewardship, protecting native plants that see no borders.
The Borderlands Restoration Network’s mission is to foster ecological and cultural place-based learning and leadership; restore and support healthy, regenerating water sources and flourishing plant and animal communities; and support prosperous borderland communities by expanding a vibrant restoration economy.
Apothecary + Demonstration Garden
Project Description: Perennial is a nonprofit that teaches people creative skills to reuse materials and live a sustainable and self-sufficient life. We work to make natural products and processes accessible and approachable while fulfilling our mission to turn discarded items into cherished objects. Funding from Mountain Rose Herbs will allow us to expand our apothecary to encourage folks to explore and experiment with natural finishes, dye stuffs, oils, and waxes. We will also be building our outdoor classroom and demonstration garden, giving our class participants a beautiful space to learn about native plants and natural dyes.
Perennial's mission is to build a creative culture of sustainability in which discarded items are transformed into valued and cherished resources. We offer craft and DIY classes using all salvaged materials and provide free programs to women in transition, including formerly incarcerated women, survivors of domestic violence, women experiencing homelessness, and more. Come check out Perennial the next time you're in St. Louis!
Interested in Applying in 2020?
We are looking for home herbalists, small businesses, and nonprofit organizations who just need a little assistance to make their vision a reality. Tell us how you’re working to make this planet a better place! We will begin taking applications in spring of 2020.
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