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Garfield Park Conservatory Alliance

The mission of the Garfield Park Conservatory Alliance is to change lives through the power of nature. Its work is grounded in the belief that spending time in and appreciating nature is vital to the health and well-being of all people, and the planet. Showcasing a global plant collection and 12 acres of indoor and outdoor gardens, the Garfield Park Conservatory draws around 300,000 visitors annually. The Alliance connects people to nature through a broad range of public programming, including nature-based family activities, school field trips, teen internships, classes in gardening and sustainability, seasonal flower shows, exhibits and performances.

These opportunities are particularly important to residents of East Garfield Park and adjoining West Side neighborhoods, which are majority Black and African American communities where historic disinvestment has limited access to the breadth of educational and cultural opportunities found in other parts of the city. The new indoor EMG Children’s Garden at the Conservatory is a $9 million investment to create more equitable access to nature play and immersive learning experiences on the city’s West Side. Set to open in the fall of 2024, the EMG Children’s Garden will provide Garfield Park-area youth with free, safe, year-round and local nature experiences that are vital to the social, emotional and physical development of all children. The project advances the Alliance’s mission to change lives through the power of nature and strategic plan goal to be the most inclusive campus for nature education in the U.S.

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