The community garden at Saint John of God

The community garden at Saint John of God

Students, volunteers and dignitaries stand in the garden at Archbishop Damiano School, Westville Grove. The garden, started in 2008, now has a paved pathway for students who use wheelchairs.
Photo by Alan M. Dumoff

In 2008, Westville Grove’s Archbishop Damiano School, Saint John of God Community Services, began a community garden, with just a few butterfly bushes, to teach their students with developmental disabilities the importance of good health and nutrition.

Ten years later, the expanded garden includes raised vegetable beds, a fully-functioning greenhouse and, now, a paved garden pathway to allow students who use wheelchairs the opportunity to enjoy and participate in garden activities.

The school celebrated its new garden path last month in a ceremony with students, families, donors, staff, and community partners and volunteers.

In addition to promoting sustainable interactions between students and community members, the garden has served as a teaching tool for math, science, technology, and language arts literacy.

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