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ATLANTIC CITY â€“ Gardeners at the AtlantiCare-funded community garden at the Historic Absecon Lighthouse planted their first seeds June 16. The garden is the second of six community gardens for Atlantic City residents that will be funded through AtlantiCare's Growing Green-Atlantic City initiative, supported in part by a donation from the Dave Matthews Band.
The Growing Green initiative aims to increase access to fresh, healthy foods. Twenty Atlantic City 1st Ward residents signed up for a plot in the garden, which will yield two seasons of harvest this year.
AtlantiCare provided $10,000 to establish the Absecon Lighthouse community garden in its first year, and plans to fund $1,500 each of the next two years to help sustain and expand the garden. In addition to funding, AtlantiCare provides nutrition education. The lighthouse will use two of the garden beds for youth programming and as a collective harvest location for community members.
Local companies and organizations that donated to the community garden include Atlantic City Special Improvement District Landscaping Division; Atlantic County Utilities Authority; Courson Electric; Lowe's; Kline Construction; and Schairer Brothers Sawmill.
"It's great when local companies and organizations come together to help improve the community," said Chris Hall, operations manager of Schairer Brothers Sawmill. "It was a pleasure to have the opportunity to work on the community garden project."
For more information about AtlantiCare's Growing Green initiative, see www.atlanticare.org/growinggreen.