Get Going, Get Growing in Ajo

This article was written by past Local Food Program Director, Steve Russell.

1001292_679458095401899_321429668_nGet Going, Get Growing in Ajo!

Get Going, Get Growing (also known as 4G) is a community initiative of the International Sonoran Desert Alliance that has already resulted in a great benefit to the Ajo community. Over the last three years, the 4G program has significantly increased the community’s resiliency and self-reliance by improving access to food, and it has graduated 20 interns mentored on all aspects of gardening and small scale food production.

[To support the program’s current fundraising campaign click here.]

4410280904_641a378e39_oHealthy food options are not widely available Ajo, which is a rural low-income area, largely covered by a USDA food desert. In the program’s few short years, gardens have been established and maintained at the health clinic, the school, and various neighborhoods and communities—as well as in many backyards. In addition, over 160 families now regularly receive 4G’s free and healthy produce through an ongoing relationship with the local food bank.

10430890_365728083603570_5342565234457011316_nGet Going, Get Growing is about more than gardening and healthy eating habits, too. This is a critical development opportunity for the program’s participants. 4G interns learn valuable agriculture experience, job training and customer service skills, which increases their employability when the time comes for them to move on to other opportunities.

This program is a stellar example of the incredible value of building human capital in Arizona’s small communities. Through the efforts of the 4G program, community members have a significant increase in availability of fresh produce for this isolated community and its graduates have grown into strong advocates for healthy lifestyles in Ajo.9776_368459256663786_6465081646672643416_n

The 4G Program needs your support! The program has set a $7,500 goal to fund the internship and they’ll be running a kickstarter campaign, through April 26th. CLICK HERE for more info.

See also: The Revolution Requires Cover Crops, Edible Baja Arizona