Benefits of Volunteering

Volunteering brings fun and fulfillment to your life.

Volunteering is a fun and easy way to explore your interests and passions. Doing volunteer work you find meaningful and interesting can be a relaxing, energizing escape from your day-to-day routine of work, school, or family commitments. Volunteering also provides you with renewed creativity, motivation, and vision that can carry over into your personal and professional l


Volunteering as a family.

Children watch everything you do. By giving back to the community, you show them firsthand how volunteering makes a difference and how good it feels to help other people and animals and enact change. It’s also a valuable way for you to get to know organizations in the community and find resources and activities for your children and family.

Volunteering is good for your mind and body.

Volunteering helps counteract the effects of stress, anger, and anxiety. The social contact aspect of helping and working with others can have a profound effect on your overall psychological well-being.  It also provides a sense of purpose.


Volunteering can advance your career.

Your volunteer work might also expose you to professional organizations or internships that could be of benefit to your career.


What is Urban Gardening?

Urban Gardening

Urban farming, is the practice of cultivating, processing and distributing food in or around a village, town, or city.. Many low-income residents suffer from high rates of obesity and diabetes and limited sources of fresh produce. In the developing south, food security, nutrition, and income generation are key motivations for the practice. In either case, more direct access to fresh vegetables, fruits, and meat products through urban agriculture can improve food security and food safety.

I first learned about urban gardening while attending Integrative Nutrition Institute, one of our lectures was taught by Daphne Miller , MD a practicing family physician, author and Associate Clinical Professor at the University of California San Francisco. Dr. Miller is the founder of the Growing Health Collaborative, which brings together experts from medicine, public health and agriculture, to build a “health sensitive” food system from the soil up. Miller is a graduate of Brown University and Harvard Medical School and completed her family medicine residency and an NIH-funded primary care research fellowship at University of California, San Francisco. She was a senior advisor for Prevention Institute, is on the Advisory Board of the Center for Health and Nature at Oakland Children’s Hospital, the UC Berkeley Institute for Parks, People and Biodiversity and the Edible Schoolyard Foundation and a past Fellow at the Berkeley Food Institute and the University of Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine.  Her lecture really caught my attention as she discussed holistic farming for improved health from the ground up and the great benefits of urban farming.

While looking for family volunteering opportunities I came across an urban garden in need of family volunteering, I immediately registered myself and my family to volunteer a few hours on a weekend. I had the fortune to be able to speak with Leo, who has worked at this great garden for 4 years and was able to provide so much valuable knowledge. This Urban garden at one point was considered a food dessert zone. Food dessert zone are defined as parts of the country vapid of fresh fruit, vegetables, and other healthful wholefoods, usually found in impoverished areas. This is largely due to a lack of grocery stores, farmers' markets, and healthy food providers. This was astonishing to us, as this Urban garden was located in a low income area in the city of Dania Beach, which is located near the City of Fort Lauderdale and Fort Lauderdale Real Estate, where one would imagine everyone would have access to fresh food and vegetables.

This wonderful Urban Garden is called The Patch Garden. I truly recommend you pay this little farm a visit whether its to volunteer or to purchase organic produce, take the family, make a day out of it, there is so much to learn on this farm, so much love from the volunteers, and most important let's all be part of the solution by spreading the word and knowledge. Let's continue to create the ripple effect, that will transform the world.

Benefits of Urban Farming

Increases Property Value
In a UC-Davis report on the benefits of urban agriculture, it was stated,

"studies correlate urban farms and community gardens to increasing home values and household income...The presence of gardens raised property values as much as 9.4% within five years of establishment"

Small Business Growth Engine
Urban and vertical farming are experiencing triple digit year over year growth, and it isn't slowing down soon.

According to AgHires, the vertical urban farming market is expected to grow by over 384% in the next 5 years. That's over 30.8% year over year growth!

Expanding Grant Funding Opportunities
Commercial urban farms received more funding in 2016 than any previous year in history in the United States.

Improves State of Mind
According to a Psychology Today article titled "Plants Make You Feel Better", presence of plants indoors or in your garden:

- Lowers systolic blood pressure - Lowers levels of anxiety - Increases job satisfaction

Decreases "Food Miles"
Food miles for local produce that is produced from an urban garden or farm can be less than .001% the distance that grocery store (and even restaurant) produce travels from "farm to fork".

Correlates with Socioeconomic Diversity
There is a correlation between areas with urban farming projects and socioeconomic diversity, according to this study from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization.



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Volunteering at Our Local Urban Garden
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Volunteering at Our Local Urban Garden
Urban farming, is the practice of cultivating, processing and distributing food in or around a village, town, or city.. Many low-income residents suffer from high rates of obesity and diabetes and limited sources of fresh produce.
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