Community Gardening as an Agent for Change

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Lane, Kathryn
Master of Arts in Earth Literacy
Social disorganization takes on many forms and its consequences are distressing. Community gardens have the ability to transform crime, changing negative vacant lots into positive green spaces, which uplift the spirits of community members and encourage inter-ethnic group and intergenerational socialization. In addition, community gardens serve as a way to reunite members of their communities back to the Earth. It is through this building of new relationships that community members become empowered to improve their situations. It is my belief that community gardens are incomparable in their ability to heal a variety of social issues. Perhaps, one of the greatest gifts of a community garden is its ability to add stability to communities that have high levels of social disorganization. My goal in presenting this work is to provide a source for future use and to show that community gardens can be an agent for change. It is my belief that there is a correlation between community gardening and a reduction in the rate of social disorganization and that a reduction in the rate of social disorganization will in turn lead to a decrease in crime rates and community destabilization. It is my conviction that as one of millions of species living on Earth, humans need the Earth. In addition, I further believe that by becoming one with the Earth humans can cure not only their own ills, be they social, psychological, or physical in nature, but that we can also heal the damage that we have, and continue to cause the Earth.