Community gardens are on the rise throughout our nation as families seek economic ways to eat more healthy foods by growing their own fruits and vegetables. Gardening in a neighborhood environment strengthens relationships among neighbors, reduces stress and enhances a sense of wellbeing.
The City of Toledo wants to help provide water for community gardens without access, because working with non-profit partners and residents can grow more than plants. When everyone pulls together, we can promote economic development through job training and education and support entrepreneurs engaged in urban agriculture.
About the Community Garden Water Program
This program was designed to install the water tap, curb stop, meter pit, remote-read meter, backflow prevention device, and a hose connection in selected community gardens. If selected, recipients will also receive instructions for how to winterize the equipment to prevent damage, such as freezing.
Estimated value: $2000 per location.
What is the obligation of recipients?
Gardeners must pay the water costs. The cost for water will vary greatly depending on how much is used.
A contract for water service must be placed in the name of a responsible individual or organization with no DPU account arrearages (outstanding money owed). An authorized individual or entity (Agent) must sign a contract to be legally bound to pay for the water used at the garden location.
What are the benefits for community gardeners?
Community gardeners will enjoy the convenience and savings of improved water access, no equipment rentals (such as hydrant meters), no need to call in periodic meter reads, and safety and extended equipment life through no more hoses dragged across roadways.
How do I apply?
Applications are available below. Organizations may apply anytime, but applications will be reviewed twice a year, based on whether they were received prior to April 1 or September 1. Hard copy applications complete with the signature of authorized agent are to be submitted to the Department of Public Utilities as indicated on the application.
How are applicants selected?
Applicants may be asked to meet in person with evaluators. Site visits will be made to all locations and a panel of the partners will evaluate the applications prior to making their recommendations. Program funding is not required to be expended in a specific timeframe.
The community garden water program was designed to support urban gardens where citizens work together as volunteers and are affiliated with non-profit neighborhood organizations or gardening outreach sponsors such as Toledo GROWs.
To prioritize requests, the panel of judges will consider the number of people involved with the project, the number of families receiving fresh produce, and the group or organizational capacity, among other aspects. Neighborhood beautification will also be considered an element of the Program. The panel will wish to see evidence of the long-term viability of the community garden.