SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Construction crews are making progress on the exterior of the new Unity Gardens Community Learning Center at LaSalle Avenue Garden.
Executive Director Sara Stewart says it’s been a long time coming.
“It’s a symbol of what we’ve all worked for, not just the building, but the free food model meant, our edible parks, we’re a beacon of food safety throughout our community,” Stewart told a group of community members and volunteers Friday during a progress update.
Since 2009, Unity Gardens in South Bend has served the neighborhood on the West Side, providing healthy, free food and a gathering space for the community.
The use of the gardens is entirely outside, with the exception of a shed as a shelter.
Watch the video below to find out why The Unity Gardens says the new Community Learning Center is needed. (Story continues below video.)
Friday’s update also marks a transition in the nonprofit’s progression from the exterior envelope of the building to the imagination of what the interior will look like.
Stewart led community members and volunteers on a tour of the building while the construction crews worked. She has indicated each piece and what it will be used for.
“If it is pouring rain our tours have to go elsewhere and all of our classes that everyone has been so wonderful to participate in, we cannot host directly on site where we can enjoy our beautiful garden, our soil, all of it. , so that allows us to have a home for the unity gardens, ”said Stewart.
Take a look at the photos below for more uses of the space. (The story continues below the photo gallery.)
An interior project space (Photo courtesy of The Unity Gardens)
A produce market that will work to provide healthy food to the area on the west side of South Bend. (Photo courtesy of The Unity Gardens)
A garden library will serve as a space where children and adults can learn about gardening. (Photo courtesy of The Unity Gardens)
An event space to organize community events. (Photo courtesy of The Unity Gardens)
An on-site classroom will help The Unity Gardens add courses to their current roster of over 100 courses offered each year. (Photo courtesy of The Unity Gardens)
Les Jardins Unity accepts donations from the community to fill the space with furniture and essentials. Anyone wishing to donate to the project can directly “buy” an item or piece of furniture from the website.
For example, a donation of $ 200 will buy a rocking chair for the porch for the space.
For more information about the project or to make a donation, contact Sara Stewart at (574) 315-4361 or email [email protected]