Announcing our 2024 Call for Projects awardees

This year, our Call for Projects drew project submissions from all across the US, with projects coming to us from as far as Ontario, Canada. We were honored and excited by the interest these organizations showed in collaborating with Nature Sacred on a design process for a Sacred Place. Each submission was compelling, making our Selection Committee’s task of choosing just a handful of projects out of the lineup quite a difficult one.

After considering each submission, the Selection Committee chose projects submitted by the following five organizations to receive Nature Sacred’s design and engagement services at no cost, as well as $10,000 in implementation funding:

  1. CARE House (Pontiac, MI): CARE House is a healing haven for children who have experienced abuse and neglect, and provides a safe, welcoming space for children to complete forensic interviews; free professional therapeutic services; and preventative community stewardship and family outreach programs. In an existing garden created by a staff member during COVID, they hope to activate a Sacred Place where children have space to let out excess energy, where they can host outreach programs, where therapy sessions can occur, and where staff can seek respite.
  2. Fillmore Forward (Buffalo, NY): Fillmore Forward works to create a sense of place by improving quality of life, restoring economic vitality, and increasing inclusiveness, health, and wealth in the Broadway-Fillmore and Martin Luther King communities. Their Square Garden is sandwiched between an abandoned factory and 6-lane expressway. Already a spot where children play, neighbors walk their dogs, and community members pick fresh produce, they’ve identified a desire for additional gathering spaces, benches, wildflowers, and other elements to build out the vision for their space.
  3. The Garden by the Bay (New York City, NY): The Edgemere community founded The Garden by the Bay in 2021 to fulfill their need for a healing space in the wake of flooding, pollution, and the effects of wildfires, among other factors. With a beautiful view of Jamaica Bay, the garden is already a place where community members can come to take a breath and hear the birdsong. A newly acquired lot added to the garden offers the potential space for healing circles, yoga classes, picnics, movies, and music.
  4. Metcalfe Park Community Bridges (Milwaukee, Wisconsin): Metcalfe Park Community Bridges (MPCB) is an organization for the community by the community that exists to support residents and revitalize the Metcalfe Park neighborhoods. MPCB has designed and implemented multiple community parks; a 2022 shooting that happened just across the street elevated for residents the need for a healing space, and North Star Park was the result. Community desires thus far include ornamental trees, benches, art panels, and potentially a labyrinth.
  5. Parity Homes (Baltimore, MD): Parity Homes is an equitable development company proudly headquartered in West Baltimore that acquires and rehabilitates abandoned properties by the block to create affordable home ownership opportunities. In the current block of houses Parity Homes is renovating, the demolishing of 4 adjacent properties left a spacious corner in which the community would like to see benches, pollinator plantings, nature play elements, outdoor movie nights, and more.