"Together We Grow" is a community garden project created for youth, by youth, in the Avondale and Glen Elder neighborhoods of southeast Sacramento. Through a Leadership Development after-school program, a group of youth were prompted to come up with their own community service project.

They decided to undertake a project that would beautify their neighborhood. Their idea evolved to include both a youth-led community garden and an accompanying mural project. The community garden project gives this dedicated group of 12 local youths the opportunity to gain work skills, build self-esteem, and learn to work as a group on behalf of their larger community.

The youth, all low-income and between the ages of 14 to 17, are not only planning and designing the garden. They are committing themselves to planting the garden, tending it, and reaping its rewards. Along the way, they are learning valuable skills, stretching from gardening know-how to knowledge of how the produce they grow can be an important part of a healthy diet. Classes that incorporate nutrition education and cooking are the latest exciting aspect of the program.

This comprehensive program not only includes the classes and gardening, based out of the George Sim Community Center, but field trips to enhance their education of food and nutrition to such local events as farmers' markets.

Asian Resources, the City of Sacramento, and the Avondale/Glen Elder Weed and Seed Program are proud to be the collaborative partners that support these youth in their endeavors. They hope that the exposure these youth receive to gardening, nutrition, community, and employment will plant the seeds of a healthy, creative, and bountiful future.