"Planting with Purpose" grant awarded for a community garden at Santiago/St. James, Oakland

Posted on February 1, 2017

The sidewalks and parking lot at Santiago/St. James, Oakland, will soon be an oasis of green thanks to a prestigious state grant secured by the Episcopal Impact Fund (EIF). EIF has been awarded a $60,000 “Planting with Purpose” grant from California’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund. This grant will be used to plant carbon-sequestering trees in a disadvantaged community adjacent to Santiago/St. James and to build a community garden at Santiago serving congregants, neighbors, and the on-site food bank.

The children of Santiago plan their community garden

In addition to Santiago, EIF’s partners are Urban Releaf, an urban forestry group based in Oakland, and Indigenous Permaculture, a grassroots organization focused on food security and revitalizing the ecological health of low-income communities. This is the first time a faith-based organization has been awarded a Planting with Purpose grant.

According to EIF executive director, Kathleen Piraino, “The faith community should be at the table when programs addressing environmental justice are being funded. The coalition we created to do this work will be a powerful force for good in East Oakland.”

The parking lot at Santiago will be transformed into a community garden