Community Garden takes shape in Cape Girardeau

Community Garden takes shape in Cape Girardeau

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - For Robert Harris, a chance to have a garden for members of the community to partake in is a dream come true.

Years ago, Harris said they started this garden in Washington Park in Cape Girardeau to help fight obesity in the area. And while vegetables were donated to area organizations, Harris wanted more.

"There's a real problem with child obesity and there is a need for fresh fruits and vegetables," Harris said.

Recently, garden plots were raised and sectioned out to allow individuals, families or organizations to grow their own foods.

"We decided to kind of involve families so each family can have their own plot," Harris said. "We can help the families raise their vegetables in their plots."

Harris said he believes this will be very beneficial for children in helping them learn where food comes from and, hopefully, leave with a new hobby.

"We would like for kids to know that food doesn't come from a factory and to know where something comes from," he said. "They can work and help get involved and help to raise up food for their families. It can be a family thing together."

Harris said the Cape Girardeau Health Department, along with the City of Cape Girardeau, has helped him turn his dream into a reality.

A pastor with the St. James AME Church stopped by to learn more information about the community garden.

The pastor said this is a great opportunity for the kids in her church to get out and be involved in gardening and learn about some healthier eating options.

"When you know what you're eating, you look and see sometimes names on packages that you can't even pronounce (at stores)," Harris said. "You would just like the kids and families to work to help raise fresh vegetables and everything don't have to be packaged. You can just do something yourself."

There are only eight plots as of right now. However, they plan on adding more in the future when more community members become interested.

If you would like information on how to be involved in the Washington Park Community Garden, call City Hall or the Cape Girardeau County Health Department.

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