Sustainable Long Island Receives Grant from ERM Group Foundation

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Sustainable Long Island has been awarded $8,500 from the Environmental Resources Management Group Foundation (ERM) in support of the organization’s Healthy Environments and Food Through Gardens project. Funding will go toward creating a raingarden at East Islip High School – the second at the site – and expanding an existing community garden at the Town of North Hempstead’s Yes We Can Community Center in New Cassel.

“Sustainable Long Island shares ERM’s vision of promoting environmental education to the public and we feel we have a great opportunity through both of our project tasks to teach and train a number of community residents in both East Islip and New Cassel,” said Ann Fangmann, Executive Director, Sustainable Long Island.“All involved community members and stakeholders will have the chance to learn about sustainability issues ranging from green infrastructure and water conservation to food access and the benefits of communal gardening.”

Rainwater capture techniques such as raingardens are an important tool toward clean water and environmental conservation in that they capture and infiltrate rain where it falls, reducing storm water runoff and improving the health of the surrounding waterways. The East Islip High School raingarden will be the second raingarden built by Sustainable Long Island at the school, the first of which was completed in 2015. Sustainable Long Island will once again prepare the site, design and execute the build, and facilitate two educational workshops with students to engage them on their role in having a more sustainable future.

Community gardens address two critical problems: the affordability of food for many needy residents and a lack of understanding of how sustainable agriculture coincides with environmental health. Sustainable Long Island will expand New Cassel’s community garden at the Town of North Hempstead’s Yes We Can Community Center by building additional garden beds; planting additional compost, mulch, and seeds; and facilitating an educational workshop about gardening techniques, agricultural practices, and environmental sustainability. The expanded garden will also be incorporated into after-school programming with local students and integrated with the nearby Magnolia Gardens senior housing apartments in order to have seniors help with gardening and watering.

 

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