Bookmark and Share RSS IconRSS

Feature Stories by Date

Feature Story

Health Center Today, September 1, 2010

Urban Service Track’s Community Gardens Raise More Than Just Produce

By Carolyn Pennington

After spending the summer tending community gardens in Hartford, Urban Service Track scholars recently held an open house to celebrate the fruits of their labors and raise awareness about health issues impacting the community.

The student-initiated project involved 25 UConn medical, dental and pharmaceutical students in the planting and supporting of three garden beds at the community garden on Huntington Street, as well as the community garden at City Mission on Vine Street.

More than 50 people attended the open house held at the Huntington Community Garden, many of them residents of the Asylum Hill neighborhood. The Urban Service Track students, along with representatives from the Asylum Hill Family Clinic, Knox Parks Foundation and Asylum Hill Congregational Church organized the event.

Students distributed their garden-grown produce and herbs to residents and held food demonstrations using nutritious and tasty low-cost recipes. The organizers also offered blood pressure screenings and counseling, and distributed health promotion materials and referrals to local clinics.

Plans are already underway for next year’s Urban Service Track community garden initiative.

Photo of Urban Service Track scholars

Urban Service Track scholars inspecting one of the garden beds during an open house at the Huntington Community Garden in Hartford August 26.

Photo of young residents of the Asylum Hill neighborhood

Young residents of the Asylum Hill neighborhood entertain during the open house.

Photo of woman undergoing blood pressure screening

Blood pressure screenings were offered during an open house at the Huntington Community Garden.

Photo of Urban Service Track students

Urban Service Track students engage in community outreach.