Nacoochee Presbyterian Church Reflects on their Four Directions Fund Grant

In spring 2019, GIPL was pleased to provide a seed grant through our Four Directions Fund to an inspiring butterfly garden project at Nacoochee Presbyterian Church.

After noting a lack of forage and habitat for butterflies, Monarchs in particular, and lack of forage for pollinators like bees, Nacoochee Presbyterian Church decided to take action. Bees sustain much of our natural food supply, therefore we must find ways to help sustain their living environment. By planting both a butterfly garden and a pollinator garden, project participants were able to provide a habitat for butterflies and bees, bring awareness to church members of all ages about the importance of these insects to the ecosystem, and provide beauty as well.

The gardens use plants as well as bushes that attract butterflies and bees. Because the church is surrounded by a pasture as well, they were able to establish a pollinator wild flower garden. The first wild flower area is near the playground at Nacoochee Presbyterian, and they hope to expand this wild flower garden each year in areas at the edge of the pasture to ensure there are always nectar and pollen producing flowers for bees and other pollinators. With current development and landscaping near the church campus, places that in the past were allowed to grow up in “weeds” are now nicely manicured. While they look pretty, the native plants that provide forage and shelter for butterflies, bees and other pollinators are greatly reduced. These gardens are one way we can help in this problem.

GIPL is proud to support a project that is helping sustain the ecosystem already in place, despite the challenges of development near the church. We look forward to seeing Nacoochee Presbyterian’s wild flower and pollinator gardens grow over the years. Click here to view images of the gardens.

To qualify for funding from the Four Directions Fund, you and others from your faith community can sign up for a Sacred Activism workshop offered by GIPL.  All participants that complete the workshop are eligible to apply for a seed grant of $300 which can be used to fund your special project. To learn more, visit https://gipl.org/four-directions-fund/ .

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