Community garden could spring from Headquarters soil
A small parcel of ITD’s 44-acre Headquarters campus could bear fruit – or at least vegetables – next year if enough employees volunteer to be part of a unique community garden concept.
Public Information Officer Jeff Stratten recently introduced the idea to the ITD executive team, asking for approval to pursue the concept as a community service project. He proposed establishing a garden on the complex, possibly between the Annex and the supply warehouse.
Creating and maintaining a garden would require a lot of work and devoted workers, Stratten said, but he believes businesses would provide donations. Produce from the garden would be shared with the food bank or distributed to needy families. A number of immigrants occupy nearby apartments and would be eligible to participate in tending the garden, Stratten said.
He suggested that participation would be a good ITD team-building activity and could involve area schools. Because it would be volunteer-based, employees would be expected to work on the garden outside of their regular ITD hours, which generally are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
ITD's commitment to operating a garden would be a year-to-year decision, Stratten said.
To get the concept off the ground – or more appropriately, in the ground – for next year, a strong response from willing participants is needed now. Anyone working at Headquarters who would like to play a part in the growing enterprise should contact Stratten at ext. 8005.
Early employee response (by the end of September) will determine whether the garden takes root, he said.
Stratten encouraged ITD employees working at district offices to consider a similar program, if time and space allow.