Kimbal Musk, brother of multi-millionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk, recently started the Million Gardens Movement to help feed families. The organization aims to become the world’s largest gardener community, helping to fight food insecurity, which affects millions globally.
Launched earlier this year, the Million Gardens Movement hopes to inspire a happier, healthier world through gardening initiatives. The charitable organization wants to educate and support millions of new gardeners so they can grow their own food. Best of all, a garden can grow anywhere – in a backyard or windowsill, or even on a fire escape. No matter where the seeds are planted, getting fresh fruits and veggies on people’s plates is the ultimate goal.
The seed of a new idea to help address food insecurity
During the pandemic, Kimbal Musk decided to collaborate with owner of Modern Farmer magazine Frank Giustra on this massive project. Kimbal, the executive director of the non-profit Big Green, already had experience with gardening initiatives. With Kimbal’s background in startups combined with Frank’s experience in food philanthropy, the two joined forces to create MGM.
Many people live in food deserts where they have no way to buy fresh fruits and veggies. With this in mind, the two entrepreneurs decided to “provide the families that need it most with a beginner-friendly garden kit.” Called Little Green Gardens, the kits contain ready-to-use fruit and veggie garden beds. As of now, 5,000 garden kits have already been distributed to help feed families.
According to the website, a small $10 donation “will provide a beginner-friendly garden kit to a family so they can grow their own fresh vegetables, fruits, and herbs.” Along with the tools to grow a garden, each kit contains instructions and “family-friendly activities to build food literacy.” The Million Gardens Movement hopes to create a “more resilient food system” to eliminate growing food insecurity.
How people have gotten involved in the movement that helps feed families
By giving people the tools and education to start gardening, they can have access to food in their own backyard. You can join the movement if you’d like through the MGM website. There, you can sign up to join the community and connect with other gardeners. Or, you can donate $10 which will go directly toward a gardening kit to help feed families.
The two entrepreneurs want every family in North America to have access to fresh, healthy food. So far, over 2,400 gardeners have signed up to begin growing in 2021 through the site. 632 learning gardens have been placed in schools as well to teach kids about growing food. In addition to the 5,000 gardening kits distributed, this brings the grand total of new gardens to over 8,000!
Kimbal and Frank hope the movement only continues to grow. Celebrities have been helping to spread the message, using their social media platforms to share the importance of gardening. Harrison Ford, Zooey Deschanel, Nicole Scherzinger, Maye Musk – mother of Kimbal – along with Elon Musk, have gotten on board.
Frank says they’ve received such a positive response and passion about their mission. He says that gardening activists they worked with for the launch kept asking what more they could do to help. Many people around the world share their vision about a healthier, more sustainable planet.
It all started when Frank reached out to Kimbal with the idea of creating Million Gardens Movement together. They wanted to make it simple for any family to have a garden, especially those without access to fresh food.
Frank says the following:
“Planting a seed is an act of hope for a brighter tomorrow. We hope millions will join us to grow their own garden and give a garden to a family.”
They hope the gardening movement will gain traction worldwide to help bea food insecurity
“The Million Gardens Movement is about reconnecting us to our roots, to real food, and to a path to a sustainable, healthy lifestyle. I want to inspire families across America — and the globe — to experience the magic of growing your own food. We can all have an incredible impact on the health and happiness of current and future generations by gardening more at home, school, and in our community,” says Kimbal.
Frank says that the online gardening community continues to grow, which helps them feed more families. Eventually, as their name suggests, they hope at least one million gardeners will join the movement. Frank added that it feels great seeing so many people donate since it directly helps feed families. Plus, the people who donate may take up gardening as well, making it a win-win.
“We’ve been able to deliver garden kits to Denver, Detroit, Memphis, and Indianapolis so far,” he said. “We’re working to deliver 5,000 kits in Denver alone in April for Earth Month, and we’re working on delivery plans for cities after that drop.”
The gardening kits will provide meals to thousands of low-income people or those live in food deserts. Since the pandemic began, around 25% of Americans have faced food insecurity, according to MGM. Unfortunately, hunger has been on the rise in the country for decades.
Studies prove this movement is necessary
However, the Million Gardens Movement can help close this gap by providing people with the means to grow a garden. This will not only give them access to nutritious food, but help them become more self-sustainable. According to the Journal of Extension, a backyard vegetable garden produces $677 worth of fruits and veggies per year, on average.
“Our hope is to quickly expand to Canada this year with sights on Vancouver and Toronto,” says Musk. “We hope to expand to Mexico and beyond to make this a worldwide movement to encourage millions of people to grow their own food.”
Food insecurity affects millions of people worldwide, and the numbers seem to rise every year. However, the Million Gardens Movement hopes to combat this worrying trend by putting gardens in classrooms and homes. We can’t wait to see how the charitable organization progresses as it continues to feed families around the globe.