Regional Environmental Council

Regional Environmental Council (REC)Regional Environmental Council

Regional Environmental Council of Central Massachusetts (REC) is a grassroots, non-profit organization located in Worcester, Massachusetts. Since 1971, REC has been focused on building healthy, sustainable, and equitable communities in Worcester. They aim to empower local residents to be environmental leaders in their communities and they promote sound decisions on issues such as, solid waste disposal, waterways, air pollution and clean energy. This organization coordinates programs that bring the members of the community together to attend to urban environmental issues.
One of the programs is called Urban Garden Resources Of Worcester (UGROW) which is a city-wide community gardens program that addresses the problems of food security in the community and lack of resources in the communities. They aspire to create an alternative to fossil-fueled, corporate agriculture. Another program ran by REC, under UGROW is; YOUTH Growing and Raising Organics in Worcester (YouthGROW), which is a program where they train and involve the youth in helping with projects such as building garden beds, spreading compost and planting vegetables. It is an eight week urban agriculture youth employment program for young adults from the ages of 14-16, they are paid for 20 hours of work each week. Their work includes physical farming, skill building workshops and empowerment activities.

The REC currently supports 25 existing gardens run by over 250 gardeners, and has been supporting gardens for 13 years. Over the years, the REC has helped local residents find space for gardening in addition to providing groups with compost, soil testing, organic seedlings & seeds, and technical assistance. (Regional Environmental Council, 2009)

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