RecognizeGood is proud to honor Sunshine Community Gardens with our 13th RecognizeGood Lighthouse Award! Founded in 1979, Sunshine Community Gardens is one of the largest community gardens in the nation. Almost entirely self-funded, SCG’s biggest source of income is Austin’s largest plant sale – last year gardeners reported at least 1,800 people in line before the sale was ready to open! As a group, the 200+ gardeners who make up Sunshine Community Gardens give up to 40 pounds of produce twice weekly during the summer to a local food bank called Micah 6, which helps feed low-income Austinites – that’s just under 25,000 pounds of food last year alone. Gardeners also work with Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired to teach horticulture skills to the school’s students. The 200+ gardeners each donate (at least) 2 hours each year to help maintain areas of the garden used by blind and visually-impaired students – that’s about 400 hours collectively donated outside of maintaining their own gardens. SCG also donates portions of plant sales to TSBVI’s horticulture program, adding up to about $8,000 each year, and donates plants to school gardens and local nonprofits like Urban Roots and The Green Corn Project. On top of all that, the group gives tours to kids from Austin Children’s Shelter, has worked with Girl Scouts to set up bee projects, and continues to work with Compost Coalition to promote composting and recycling in Austin.
With the presentation of this award, RecognizeGood gives Sunshine Community Gardens and its over 200 gardeners a heartfelt THANK YOU on behalf of the entire community.
Jeff Monks accepted the award on behalf of the group in a special presentation on the garden grounds last Saturday morning, September 17th. Andrew Cooper, partner at award sponsor iRex Group and president of parent company TyRex Group, presented the club with several thank-you gifts – a $250 donation to the club, an award plaque, two tickets to the 2017 Ethics in Business & Community Award luncheon, and a pay-it-forward donation to PET-Austin in the club’s name. A PET (Personal Energy Transportation) vehicle has also been donated in the club’s name. This recognition represented a sincere “Thank you!” from the Central Texas community for an amazing display of selfless service from the entire group at Sunshine Community Gardens.
The RecognizeGood Lighthouse Award recognizes the selfless community efforts and philanthropy of Austin-area service clubs through length, magnitude or impact of service – by highlighting “special” organizations and telling their stories, we believe that others will be inspired to make our community a better place. Award nominees may be sent firstname.lastname@example.org, and are voted on by a selection committee according to the following criteria:
- Length of Service
- Magnitude of Service
- Special One-Time Event
This was the 13th RecognizeGood Lighthouse Award presented to an Austin-area service organization. Previous award winners include Sertoma of Round Rock, Rotary Club of Lakeway / Lake Travis, Austin Downtown Founders Lions Club,Town & Country Optimists Club, Northwest Austin Kiwanis, Round Rock Kiwanis, Junior League of Austin, The Exchange Club of Austin, Rotary Club of West Austin, University Hills Optimist Club, Rotary Club of Bee Cave / Spicewood and Rotary Club of East Austin. Thanks to Lighthouse program sponsor iRex Group, Ltd. for their generosity and active support of this program!