I had already designed the garden prior to receiving the grant money, but once funding was available, my partner Kim and I were able to actually begin putting things together. We had spoken with a manager at Home Depot about donations, and we spent an entire afternoon shopping for the supplies that Home Depot was not able to donate at the time. We purchased 5 park benches with the grant money, as well as the drip system for watering the garden. Home Depot donated all of the garden wall retainers and cinder block that was needed. Kim and I also purchased the fountain and the lattice arch at Lowes. The next week was our spring break, so we gathered a work crew and began our work that Monday. In the first day alone, we were able to complete the masonry work, assemble the benches, and assemble the arch for the garden entrance. The next day, we met with a local nursery, who gladly donated the soil to fill the planters. On Wednesday, we picked up 2 ½ tons of soil, and filled the planters. After 9 hours of work, the garden was prepped for planting and the drip system was installed. We have not been able to plant yet, but the garden is on track to be opened this month!
This project has not only created a network of youth for future projects, but has also tied together young and old to help out those in need. I feel that through donors, workers, and local advocates, my project has also tied together our community as a whole. This garden will benefit countless people, including the staff, patients, and families of those at Hospice by giving them a peaceful place in which to spend time with loved ones before they pass on.