Just weeks ago, the National Garden Bureau launched the first-of-its-kind “Growing for Futures” (#growingforfutures) philanthropic program to build therapeutic gardens. Since then, generous online and offline cash donations have reached over $7,200, with just another $2,800 needed to reach the first goal of $10,000. This ongoing, annual, fundraising initiative is designed to further the mission of National Garden Bureau, which is to raise awareness of gardening, the good it can bring into one’s life while increasing the overall use of flowers and plants. Once the goal of $10,000 is reached, a check will be presented to the Growing Solutions Farm so they can begin to build the remaining areas needed to get the farm to full productivity.

The Growing Solutions Farm in Chicago is the first beneficiary of National Garden Bureau’s (NGB) annual fundraising effort. This Farm is a vocational program of the Julie + Michael Tracy Family Foundation/Urban Autism Solutions (JMTF), which serves, educates and trains young adults with autism. As a vocational therapy garden, the Growing Solutions Farm exists to cultivate horticulture careers and life skills while also growing vegetables, fruits and herbs for partnering organizations.

So far, All-America Selections, Bruss Landscaping, Greenheart Farms, Proven Winners, Sakata Ornamentals, Seeds by Design, and Terra Organics have provided major financial donations to the program, along with countless individuals.

Because there is a high interest in therapeutic gardening, numerous high-profile stories about the garden have appeared in major news outlets:

  • WBBM-CBS News Chicago, July 16, 2014, 5 and 10 p.m. news as well as July 17, 5:30 a.m
  • WGN-CW News, 3:35 minute spot on July 18, 2014, 5:00 and 9:00 p.m. shows
  • ABC 7 News, August 10 by Karen Meyers, a nationally syndicated journalist with a focus on stories about people with disabilities.
  • WTTW TV aired their segment on Wednesday, August 20, 2014
  • Chicago Tribune did a story that ran on Sunday, August 31
  • Mike Nowak Radio show, August 17 with guests Julie Tracy and Diane Blazek talking about the fundraiser and the garden.
  • Ron Wilson Radio show, August 23 with guest Diane Blazek talking about the fundraiser and the garden.

NGB’s long-term goal is to raise $50,000 in both cash and supplies to help support the continued growth of this innovative garden project. Donations can be made via Indiegogo before October 23, 2014 or by mailing contributions directly to National Garden Bureau at 1311 Butterfield Road, Suite 310, Downers Grove, IL 60515.

For more information about this project or the National Garden Bureau, visit: www.ngb.org and follow #growingforfutures on Social Media.

About the National Garden Bureau

The National Garden Bureau is a non-profit organization in the horticulture industry with main offices in Downers Grove, Ill. Its mission is to raise awareness, provide education and increase the use of flowers and plants among gardeners and non-gardeners. For more information: www.ngb.org

For more information:
National Garden Bureau
1311 Butterfield Road
Suite 310— Downers Grove
IL 60515-5625
United States

The Julie + Michael Tracy
Family Foundation

Glenview, IL 60026
United states