Evergreen Brick Works hopes to epitomize the â€śthink global, act localâ€ť mantra for urbanites in need of nature.
Evergreen Brick Works, an environmental community center located in downtown Toronto, Canada, provides city residents with access to gardens and greenspaces while creating a sense of community.Â It reaches its goals through hosting events at a historic site that serves to link people to place, past and nature.
The literal â€śbrickworksâ€ť was a former brick making factory and brownfield site.Â Beating the trend in North America to abolish what came before and then rebuild, the founders of Evergreen Brick Works hoped to promote sustainability through using an existing structure and transforming it for a new purpose.Â The site is nowÂ Canadaâ€™s first large-scale community environmental center.
The center houses demonstration gardens to teach urban dwellers how to grow their own vegetables and hosts farmerâ€™s markets to provide access to healthy, locally-grown foods.Â Evergreen, theÂ NGO running the Brick Works, also funnels grant money to people wanting to build community gardens in vacant lots, or create outdoor classrooms in schools.
Evergreen’sÂ focus on youth extends to providing youngsters with opportunities to explore and appreciate the natural spaces in the city.Â Their camps nurture the natural curiosity of children by taking them to greenspaces within the city where they explore â€“rain or shine- build forts, catch frogs, and partake in many of the activities increasingly unavailable to kids living in urban areas.
Evergreen Brick Works is re-imagining what cities can be.Â To them, making Canadaâ€™s cities healthy places is going toÂ require sustaining greenspaces, proliferating human-powered transportation, growing food locally and keeping kids engaged in the world around them.