McLaughlin Grows is an urban farm which uses sustainable, natural practices and is located in the McLaughlin Neighborhood of Muskegon, Michigan. When Community enCompass, a non-profit neighborhood development organization began exploring the idea of community gardens, several area businesses supported the idea and the seeds of diverse partnerships were planted. Goodwill Industries of West Michigan offered use of a vacant half-acre lot behind their corporate headquarters; the Community Foundation for Muskegon County provided a generous donation for start-up costs; and we secured a full-time program coordinator with an Organic Farming Certificate from Michigan State University. With help from the Muskegon County Department of Employment and Training, the Community EnCompass Youth Employment Program hired six neighborhood youth, and we broke ground in May 2009.
McLaughlin Grows seeks to:
Provide employment, training, and hands-on educational experiences to core city youth.
Transform the local food system by providing core city residents and institutions access to nutritious, affordable, organic produce.
Build healthy neighborhoods by creating green space, promoting social interaction and fostering a sense of community.
McLaughlin Grows aims to become a model of sustainable urban agriculture within our community.