OUTSTANDING IN THE FIELD
Tito's cultivates community in San Antonio's community gardens
Though widespread urban agriculture has been common in Austin for decades, it is a relatively new phenomenon in San Antonio. Still, community leaders have long envisioned a local food system that encourages healthy eating and fights food insecurity. Now, a partnership between a beloved Texas spirits brand and an environmental nonprofit is finding ways to propel the movement forward.
Green Spaces Alliance (GSA) and a Tito's Handmade Vodka initiative called Love, Tito's Block to Block are again joining forces for a collaborative effort to transform four community gardens into regional "hubs" in San Antonio, Texas. The gardens — Eagle's Nest Community Garden, Garcia Street Farm, High Country Community Garden, and Labor Serena Community Garden — will serve as centers of learning, sharing, and community engagement for local gardeners seeking mentorship.
The partner's latest project will sprout at Garcia Street Farm on April 14. The East Side plot — created by the Alamo Colleges District and the San Antonio Housing Authority — will get a makeover as volunteers work together to redesign and expand the garden, focusing on herb, vegetable, and cut flower growing areas to support local farmers. The workers will also help expand the existing irrigation, ensuring that the garden can continue to thrive and provide fresh produce to the community.
Though the work will provide beautiful green space for San Antonians to enjoy, it will also nourish underserved communities. GSA's community gardens provide much-needed access to fresh produce in local food deserts. According to the organization, one in four low-income residents in San Antonio lack access to healthy food.
The mission dovetails with Love, Tito's, the charitable arm of the vodka giant. Since 2019, its Block to Block program has worked alongside nonprofits to create green spaces, including community gardens and farms. This year, the initiative will spread to more than 35 cities, including Denver, Indianapolis, New York City, Salt Lake City, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Newark, San Antonio, and more.
Those interested in getting involved in GSA can find more information via Facebook or Instagram. The organization hosts a bevy of community programming, including art classes, workshops, lunch-and-learns, and hike and volunteer days.