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PDS CARES has selected Franklinton Gardens as the 29th recipient of our 30 years, 30 Gifts program. The non-profit urban farm was nominated by Trina Brown, an employee of PDS Planning, Inc.

Franklinton Gardens is dedicated to growing and sharing healthy food, creating beauty, and building community with our neighbors. The organization has grown and donated thousands of pounds of fresh food to local food pantries.  They have turned abandoned lots in the Franklinton area into beautiful gardens.  In addition, they have hosted many events allowing neighbors to foster a greater sense of community.

According to statistics provided on the organization’s website, access to healthy, fresh food is hampered by the lack of a grocery store in or near Franklinton.  Almost 44% of the households in Franklinton earn less than $15,000.  Nearly 22% earn between $15,000 and $25,000. Restricted access to transportation means that residents buy their food at corner stores, fast food outlets and gas stations.  In Franklinton, where 600 of the 4,000 housing units are currently vacant, green and colorful plants provide beauty and the hope of new life.

Franklinton Gardens uses organic practices to grow vegetables, fruits and flowers on two acres at seven locations in Franklinton.  Over the next three years, they hope to build a centralized permanent space for an administrative office, an additional community garden and a series of low-maintenance, efficient food production spaces expansions.

When asked why she nominated this charity, Trina shares, “I grew up right up the hill from Franklinton, an area we referred to as “The Bottoms.”  I had many classmates and friends who lived there, and some still do.  The area has historically been characterized as impoverished. I remember what poverty looked like on the faces of my friends in elementary school.  I’ve seen firsthand that healthy food and nutrition are important.  Once you’ve seen the faces of hunger, you don’t forget.”

To learn more about Franklinton Gardens or to donate, call (614) 233-1887 or visit their website at www.franklintongardens.org.

PDS CARES is happy to make a donation to this valuable program, that they might continue making a difference in many people’s lives.

PDS CARES “30 Years, 30 Gifts” is a charitable gifting program which will make donations to thirty 501(c)(3) charities in 2015 in celebration of PDS Planning, Inc’s 30th year anniversary.