By Bryan Good
Sustainability Studies Student
My internship with Unity Gardens is connected to Sustainability in a manner
that does not fit the standard definition. The goal of Unity Gardens is to connect people not only to the garden, gardens to each other, but also people to other people. A definition I have heard regarding sustainability is that in order for humanity to survive, it has to be
willing to give of its abundance. That is one of the components of Unity Gardens that
makes it attractive.
The president (Sara Stewart) hit it on the head when she said that she
wanted to get food into an area that didn’t have access to good, real food. Her heart into
this project really shows when she has a public event. It is evident that she cares about
cultivating relationships more than many do the soil.
What does sustainability have to do with my internship? Well, Unity Gardens takes
a unified approach to contributing to the welfare of the Michiana area. Though most of the
gardens are in the immediate South Bend area, others in areas surrounding are springing
up. The point is that Unity Gardens is a launchpad for other organizations.
The universal definition of sustainability is: “Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” From there Unity Gardens provides for the immediate fulfillment of system condition four which: allows people in the immediate area of The Unity Garden to be able to meet their need for fresh, healthy food. Once that need is met, they are then free to fulfill the other needs they have.
This internship is a chance for me to grow in my understanding of not only
gardening and specifically composting methods but also providing a chance for me to serve others that are not in as good of a situation that I am. Unfortunately, my time is limited as I’m trying to limit my reliance on substances extracted from the Earth’s crust so I need to balance my traveling to and fro. The composting process limits the use of substances produced by society that result in chemical-based fertilizers. That reduces the need for petroleum and water. Resultantly, the soil is built up which prevents the physical
degradation of the land. While gardens make up a very small part of the overall picture, if
each person were to compost, there would be a significant lessening of materials going to