The Desert Marigold School Parent Council raised $200,000 to build an organic community garden adjacent to the Phoenix school. The garden is a teaching tool for all classes, especially 3rd grade, which has a curriculum block on gardening.

What the judges loved: The project helped build community awareness and support for the school. Significant funding came from grants, so parents weren’t overburdened to make it work. The garden has academic uses, and it creates ongoing interaction for community and school.

Cool fact: A farmer’s market is held at the garden every Wednesday; 20 families buy boxed greens from the harvest every week. The garden also donates to a 1st grade lunch co-op each week.