(SAVANNAH, GA) Center Parc Credit Union is donating a total of $7,500 to five Savannah area community gardens to kick off a new initiative to support local programs that increase access to fresh food and beautify neighborhoods.
Presentations of $1,500 each will be awarded on August 27 to the Garden City Homestead Association, Employability, Coastal Heritage Society (Frogtown) Garden, West Broad Street YMCA and Morningstar Arts Creative Garden.
“Community gardens increase access to fresh food, enhance beautification throughout neighborhoods, encourage physical activity and increase community knowledge about fresh food and nutrition,” said Donna Williams, community development liaison for Center Parc Credit Union.
The not-for-profit financial institution will be opening two new branches in Savannah and Pooler Wal-Mart stores this fall, with plans to open a free-standing flagship branch in 2021.
“Although we created the Community Gardens program before the arrival of COVID-19, we are keenly aware that more families need help with their basic needs, such as food, due to the economic impact of the pandemic,” said Chuck Head, president/CEO of Center Parc Credit Union. “Unfortunately, even after the virus is contained, the economic impact is likely to linger.”
To reinforce its mission of helping members achieve financial success, Head said Center Parc’s Community Gardens program will be the cornerstone of its local presence to support the community’s well-being beyond financial services.
“We plan on continuing to provide awards on a monthly basis through the end of 2020 and beyond,” Williams said. “We also plan to open our first Community Parc garden to serve the community in 2021. It is our goal to help members flourish.”
The initial presentation is scheduled for 10:00 AM on Thursday, August 27 at Coastal Georgia Botanical Gardens (at the Historic Bamboo Farm), 2 Canebrake Road, Savannah Georgia 31419. The first nonprofit organizations to receive the $1,500 funding are:
• Garden City Homestead Association, 4121 2nd St., Garden City, Ga: The mission of this organization is to give the gift of harvest to the community. Its volunteers support the farming and upkeep of a quarter-acre garden, which is expected to produce a harvest in August 2020. The group is also working with local schools to teach students how to grow a garden.
• Employability, 1249 Eisenhower Drive, Savannah: The Employability gardens are used as part of the organization’s programming designed to introduce adults living with disabilities to marketable job skills. Select adult clients work in the gardens and use the produce and herbs to support the in-house catering services, which are also staffed by adults living with disabilities.
• Coastal Heritage Society (Frogtown) Garden: 655 Louisville Rd., Savannah: Frogtown Garden is an organic sensory exhibit that helps children understand life cycles, where food comes from, and explore using all five senses. Here, many beautiful and lush plants are grown, each with its own fragrance and colors.
• West Broad Street YMCA, 1110 May Street, Savannah: One of several Ys in the Savannah area, the West Broad Street location offers a variety of afterschool programs and distributes free produce and meals to children and community members.
• Morningstar Arts Creative, 409 E Montgomery Cross Rd STE 9A, Savannah, GA 31406: Established in 1989, Morningstar Cultural Arts is a 501©3 non-profit that has worked on over 950 cultural arts, community and environmental projects. In 2021, Morningstar Cultural Arts will fuse culture and creativity to form Morningstar Arts Creative. The mission of Mstar Arts (Morningstar Cultural Arts and Morningstar Creative Arts) is the same as the initial establishment, with the inclusion of adding in the creative process and preservation projects as another journey to the mission.
Williams says applicable nonprofits are encouraged to apply for future Center Parc Credit Union sponsorships at www.centerparc.org.
ABOUT CENTER PARC CREDIT UNION
Center Parc Credit Union is a division of APCU, the oldest credit union in the state of Georgia. In September 2020 two new Center Parc Credit Union locations will open in the Savannah area: at the Pooler Walmart, 160 Pooler Parkway, and the Savannah Walmart, 6000 Ogeechee Road. The company is also planning to open a free-standing flagship branch in Savannah in the spring of 2021 and will launch an exciting community gardens program this year. The member-owned, not-for-profit financial cooperative is committed to helping hardworking people save money and prosper. Each member’s funds are insured for up to $250,000 by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA). For more information, call 800-849-8431, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit online at www.centerparc.org.
Community Development Liaison
Center Parc Credit Union
Marjorie Young, President
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