Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland

Boys & Girls Club garden
Boys & Girls Club - Pollinator Garden
GardenWalk Neighborhood: 

Surprises await those who visit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland site on Broadway Avenue in Slavic Village. In addition to the gymnasium, teen room and recording studio at the Club, the property has a half-acre farm, a pollinator garden, 25 newly planted trees and a new interactive Children’s Garden.

All are maintained by teens in BGCC’s horticulture program, a work-study program for high school students. The program teaches work skills to inner-city youth and inspires them to reach for success.

The agricultural plot is intensively planted with crops to sell at farm stands and to restaurants. It provides an opportunity for the youth to see the food growing process, from farm to table. Additionally, they gain valuable experience in customer service, marketing, and entrepreneurship.

A former wasteland of rocks and weeds in the front of the Club was transformed into a beautiful oasis in the fall of 2016.  The pollinator garden, which features plants specifically chosen for their attractiveness to pollinator insects, was laid out in a way be inviting to human visitors to the space as well. This summer, the pollinator garden will host a weekly reading event for the Club kids. It has been named the Soeder Family Garden in honor of the garden donor, Bill Soeder, and his brother, longtime BGCC President and CEO Ron Soeder.

As part of the citywide effort to restore Cleveland’s tree canopy, 25 trees were planted at the Club this spring by volunteers working in conjunction with Reforest Slavic Village. The trees provide an opportunity for the farm teens to learn about tree care and will provide shade and aesthetic value in perpetuity.

The Children’s Garden, new for 2017, is a half-acre plot consisting of a serpentine path bordered by theme gardens. It features a living willow arch, a ‘secret garden’ woodland area and a music structure. It incorporates art, ecology and literacy components as well as providing safe space for youth. It will be a destination for kids from all Clubs as well as children from local schools and daycare centers.

Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland
6114 Broadway Ave
Cleveland, OH 44127