This toolkit is designed to help community gardens assess their social impact. Social impact is defined as the benefits and resources that are created or shared because of relationships with in and around a community garden. Community gardens help build different kinds of relationships:
- Relationships with other gardeners,
- Relationships in a neighborhood or local community, and
- Relationships with local organizations such as faith-based communities, neighborhood associations, food shelves, & local businesses.
Through these relationships community gardens offer different kinds of benefits that contribute to a garden’s social impact. Community gardens:
- Beautify neighborhoods,
- Provide opportunities for exercise,
- Increase access to fresh and healthy food,
- Reduce crime,
- Break down barriers,
- Teach people new skills and hobbies, and
- Build and strengthen relationships.
Why use this toolkit? Community gardens use this tool kit because increasing the social impact of a garden will increase the garden’s sustainability
- Author: Keith Miller
- Published: 2012, CURA, Univ of Minnesota
- Intended audience: community garden leaders, gardeners, urban communities, people interested in starting a community garden
- Goals / purpose: To support community gardens in assessing their social impact.
- Methods - How would someone know they could trust this?
- Credible because it has been implemented and has worked, according to the quotes in the toolkit. It can be used with community gardens across the state
- From 1 (not very well)–4 (very well), how well does this source of food knowledge:
- Engage an adequate range of perspectives and types of knowledge? (2)
- Translate between diverse perspectives? (1)
- Address conflicts across perspectives? (1)
- Generate useful information for those affected by the issues addressed? (4)
- Include an adequate range of relevant stakeholders throughout the knowledge-creation process? (2)
- Help users of this knowledge source learn from each other? (4)
- Allow users of this knowledge source to put what they learn into action? (4)
- Consider the larger context as necessary? (3)
- What is useful, meaningful, surprising, or a problem? Questions?
- The fact that this toolkit is used to assess the impact of a community garden on a community is important and meaningful, because it's a crucial part of the follow up after a community garden has been established.
- What do you think could or should be done with this source of knowledge?
- What has already been done?
- How should we keep track of what this knowledge does as it circulates in the world?
- What connections would you like to see made to other information / people / organizations?
See http://www.cura.umn.edu/publications/catalog/npcr-1349 for this and other resources from CURA.(ID# 1012)