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Increasing Healthy Living in North Carolina Communities:
Eat Smart, Move More Community Grants
2012-2013

Rowan County Sees More Access to Sidewalks and Play Structures

Rowan County Health Department received a 2012-2013 Eat Smart, Move More Community Grant to improve neighborhood parks and recreational facilities, increase neighborhood connectivity and redevelop the West End Community Garden into a hands-on learning environment.

Key partners for the grant included:

  • Salisbury Parks and Recreation
  • City of Salisbury Public Service Department
  • City of Salisbury Planning and Engineering Departments
  • The Refuge Church
  • Playworld Preferred
  • Rowan County Government, Finance Department
  • Rowan County Health Department

The West End Community Project had three major components: installation of new playground equipment, installation of a sidewalk and restoration of the West End Community Garden.

In the West End Community, Kelsey-Scott Park had equipment that was functional but outdated. The project installed both pre-school and school-age structures, so the children in the community would have more age-appropriate choices when visiting the park.

Connectivity was improved in the West End Community through the installation of a new sidewalk between two major streets. This new section of sidewalk allows better and safer access for the West End Community residents to utilize Miller Recreation Center, Hall Gym, Kelsey-Scott Park and the Salisbury Greenway, which are all sites that promote physical activity. This new section of sidewalk also connects the West End Community with a safer, more direct route to the West End Community Garden, increasing the likelihood that residents will participate in the garden program.

The funds received allowed the Salisbury Parks and Recreation to work with The Refuge Church to revitalize the West End Community Garden. The Refuge Church participated in the weekly volunteer program to restore, develop and maintain the West End Gardens. The church cleared pathways, refurbished butterfly and insect gardens, and re-graveled the community garden site and parking lot. The Refuge Church has a goal to teach the residents of the West End Community to grow their own produce and to adopt healthier eating habits. Garden volunteers help residents grow fresh produce with 100% of the produce going to this community and other underserved families within Rowan County. As of the grant year, The Refuge Church donated over 338 pounds of fresh produce throughout the West End Community, Rowan Helping Ministries and the local Salvation Army. Karen Boehner of The Refuge Church, one of the garden caretakers, had the following to say about the garden improvements, “The most rewarding attribute of the garden is the fellowship harvested there. It’s great to meet with others and work toward a common goal. Friendships have been made…”


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