Cooper Medical School of Rowan Univerisity
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Impacting the Community: Camden Community Garden

Impacting the Community: Camden Community Garden
CMSRU student Kathy Williams picks fresh vegetables at the Camden Community Garden Autumn Harvest.

On an unusually warm Saturday morning in mid October, nearly a dozen first and second year medical students from CMSRU gathered at the Camden Community Garden to participate in the annual Autumn Harvest.  Here, alongside a handful of other volunteers and community members of all ages, the students harvested a bumper crop of tomatoes, peppers, radishes, zucchini, various lettuces, herbs and more, filling a street-side urban farm stand with fresh vegetables – available for free to members of the community.

"Access to fresh produce is a significant issue in Camden," says Jocelyn Mitchell-Williams, MD, PhD, Associate Dean for Diversity and Community Affairs. "Volunteering at the Garden was a great way to positively impact the neighborhood.  We're thrilled that so many of our students chose to get involved with this important initiative."

The nearly quarter-acre garden is a project of the Cooper Lanning Civic Association, in partnership with the Camden Children's Garden, and overseen by Ms. Sheila Roberts, a well-known community leader who lives in the neighborhood.  Interested residents and community groups were provided plots where they created their personal vegetable gardens; other plots were planted, maintained and the produce harvested for all to enjoy. 

In addition to harvesting the summer produce, students helped prepare the garden for winter crops, like onions, garlic, spinach and peas.  Click HERE for a photo gallery from the Autumn Harvest.