Birmingham, Alabama (June 21, 2022) – Every year on United Way’s Day of Action, volunteers from across the world come together to invest in their communities. This year in Central Alabama, volunteers from AmeriCorps VISTA, United Way of Central Alabama’s (UWCA’s) Young Philanthropists Society, and UWCA employees joined forces to serve Tuxedo Community Gardens. The Day of Action projects are organized and implemented by UWCA’s Hands On.
The garden was formed in 2019, when Sharon Brewer and her husband realized the neighborhood was in a food desert after the closest grocery store closed. To combat this, they began renting the land plot across from the Holy Family Catholic Church. From the beginning, the garden has been a community-wide investment as volunteers helped build raised bed gardens and Build UP constructed two pavilions. Brewer said, “We have deemed this a holistic space to feed the mind, body, and soul.” Anyone who visits the garden can see this is the case. Beds of potatoes, squash, collard greens, and more provide fresh ingredients to residents of the neighborhood, a Little Library donated by a local Eagle Scout fosters mental nourishment, and the sign at the garden’s entrance encourages visitors to say a prayer for any spiritual needs.
Brewer wants the garden to be a project that residents can fully invest in. There is a calendar posted for both work days and harvest days so that the community can participate in the growth of the garden as well as reap its benefits. Brewer was especially excited about the harvest days this year as it is the first year that the peach and pear trees have produced fruit.
Day of Action volunteers pulled weeds and planted new vegetables to keep the food fresh and healthy in this vital community asset. While volunteers were working, meteorologist Evan Chickvara of ABC 33/40 and local teacher Curtis Waddy stopped by with a group of students by from Holy Family Catholic Academy’s summertime Environment Enrichment Program, where students discuss the importance of environmental issues within the community.
UWCA would like to say a huge thank you to all of the volunteers who participated in the 2022 United Way Day of Action!
About the United Way of Central Alabama: Soon to celebrate 100 years serving Central Alabama, UWCA has proudly supported a network of health and human service organizations that meet the needs in our communities. Serving Jefferson, Shelby, Walker, Blount, St. Clair, and Chilton counties, the organization improves lives and community conditions by building and mobilizing resources through 80 partner agencies and community initiatives. United Way fights for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in every community.