NIAGARA FALLS — The community gardening partnership between St. James United Methodist Church and Community Missions “Garden of Compassion” will kick off its fourth year with a free public information session at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at St. James UMC, 4661 Porter Road. The community is invited and refreshments will be served.
The evening will include a presentation on understanding mental illness with Dr. Richard Primo. The purpose of the session is to end the stigma faced by those diagnosed with mental illness and encourage the community to work together with neighbors who are negotiating this stigma. The Gardens of Compassion accomplishes both of these goals.
For the past three years the Gardens of Composition has encouraged Community Missions clients to have an individual garden with help of volunteers from St. James. This year the gardens will be extended to help provide fresh food for the Community Soup Kitchen at Community Missions and Little Wonders Early Childhood Development Center. All volunteers will share in some of the produce.
Volunteers are also key to the success of the garden. Gardening days will be from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. on Wednesdays, and daily watering days are scheduled as needed. Any member of the community who would like to volunteer their time to tend the garden can sign up online at www.communitymissions.org/gardens or call Community Mission’s Agency Minister and Director of Community Partnerships Rev. Mark Breese at 285-3403, ext. 2259 or St. James UMC at 297-6421.