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Re: (cg) Word of Wisdom

  • Subject: [cg] Re: (cg) Word of Wisdom
  • From: adam36055@aol.com
  • Date: Tue, 26 Apr 2005 18:13:45 -0400

Date:Tue, 26 Apr 2005 09:52:44 -0700

Thank you Adam for shedding light on this issue. I believe you said it perfectly and I will take action on this. 
I also want to thank everyone else with their words of support and wisdom. 
----- Original Message ----- 
From: Adam36055@aol.com 
To: deborah@greencure.org ; community_garden@mallorn.com 
Sent: Monday, April 25, 2005 3:41 AM
Subject: Re: [cg] Words of wisdom...


The problem with community gardens "started from the top," instead of "grown from the rooots," comes down to the nexus of a volunteer organization having the structural problem/habit of looking to "Dad," or "Mom," to provide guidance, direction and material support. This isn't fatal, and often is helpful in the beginning - the step of transitioning to organizational adulthood and self governance is hard. Walking away and trusting the thing to run itself is emotionally very hard, but essential. 

There comes a point where you have to slap the baby on the fanny, and it has to start to breathe by itself.  

Your membership has to be self-sustaining, take on the responsibilities of governing and maintaining the garden.  If the land lease is OK, then the issue is to go to the gardeners and say, " You like this place? Well, I gotta go, and you have to get it together to run this place fairly and honestly. It was nice the old way, but lots of gardens run themselves - it requires effort and meetings.  If you want to do this, and keep this garden going, then here are some samples of garden rules, and governance of community gardens that run themselves.  

You can use by-laws from any number of community gardens, the Clinton Community Garden's governance is on line at http://www.clintoncommunitygarden.org/ for starters, there are others you can access from the ACGA website, and the garden links page.  Throw in a "Robert's Rules of Order," and suggest that they look to ways of supporting the project they have taken from, if they find it of enough value. 

The crux of the matter is the gardeners have to see themselves as givers to their local community instead of "clients," or "recipients."  Otherwise the garden structure collapses when Dad or Mom goes away. 

Adam Honigman
Clinton Community Garden

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