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Renewed hope for beloved southeastern San Diego community garden

Posted at 3:19 PM, Dec 25, 2019
and last updated 2020-01-07 13:06:21-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - The future looks bright for a southeastern San Diego community garden.

A signature initiative of Project New Village (PNV), the Mount Hope Community Garden helps residents grow their own food and increases access to fresh, healthy produce.

PNV has been working for over 25 years to help fight the area's growing food desert.

"We want to grow food, we want people here to eat the food, we want the people who sell food to buy from us, the people who prepare food to buy from us, said Diane Moss, Managing Director of PNV.

By circulating dollars in the community, Moss says they're adding health and wealth to the neighborhood.

"There are about 25 beds here, and people grow what they want to grow, as long as it's legal!" said Moss.

But one day, organizers were stunned to find a "for sale" sign on the garden's fence. While they knew their lease was coming up on the city-owned property, they had no idea the property was going on the market.

"We decided that we would go for this in a bid against traditional developers," said Moss.

While the group is small, they make up for their size in a commitment to elevating Mount Hope.

They reached out to The Conservation Fund, a national nonprofit, for help.

"They took a risk. They gave us an incentivized loan, and the loan essentially said, we will give you the money needed to purchase the property if in 60 days you can come up with $100,000 in cash and pledges. And we did it!"

And the group has even bigger plans for the future.

They're seeking donations for the Good Food District Hub, a center for community wellness that will feature:

  • A Holistic Health and Healing Center
  • Food System Education and Work Development
  • Community Kitchen
  • Public Market
  • Garden and Growers Co-op Space
  • Senior Apartments
  • Community Space