February 4, 2023

Last summer the Rotary Club of Lee’s Summit and the Rotary District 6040 completed a $5,000 grant with The Gardens at Unity Village to improve their watering system and remove them from city water for their gardens.

The Gardens at Unity Village is a non-profit organization that gives most of the food grown to local food pantries. They grow everything from Asparagus to Zucchini on a 3 acre plot at Unity Village in Lee’s Summit. It is totally operated by volunteers and last year donated over 3500 lbs. of fresh produce to 7 different Charities. These local charities include Lee’s Summit Social Services, After the Harvest, ReStart, Operation Breakthrough, Little Sisters of the Poor, Catholic Charities, and Raytown Emergency Assistance Program. The group supports much of their efforts with sales of foods grown in the gardens at their weekly Saturday Market.

Being an all volunteer operation and very low in funds created a problem for watering procedures. All of the crops were watered by one city water faucet. The lack of adequate water source created a great deal of water hauling, hose dragging and pumping issues which stressed out the volunteers. Garden Manager, Dr. Mark Martin, “In what seemed like “divine intervention” the Rotary Club of Lee’s Summit approached The Gardens with a possibility of a generous grant to improve the watering situation.”

The joint Rotary Club, Rotary District 6040 and Gardens at Unity Village project consisted of the installation of a water pump and pipes to deliver water from a pond on the property to the various areas of the gardens. 14 faucets now supply water to the entire three acre area, including the greenhouse. The Gardens began to benefit immediately in the form of a greatly reduced water bill. Additionally, they anticipate they will be able to provide more food, more easily with the new modernized watering system.

For more information about The Gardens at Unity Village see their website: http://www.gardensatunityvillage.org/about-us.html or follow them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/wediggardening.

For more information about the Rotary Club of Lee’s Summit see their website: https://lsrotary.com/ or follow them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LsRotary.