Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated Presents: Community Collaboration Garden – A Transformation from Eyesore to Bountiful Haven

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BY: DeVoyce C. Morris

June 29, 2024 – Mound Bayou, Miss.  What started out as an overgrown, bleak, barren and unproductive eyesore, will within the coming weeks, change into “a thing of beauty,” a fruitful, two-acre vegetable garden of peas, butterbeans and okra. Annie Y. Griffin, President of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, Chi Mu Omega Chapter of Mound Bayou, announced today that the chapter collaborates with John Coleman and the Alcorn State University Research and Demonstration Center, Victor Byas and the Byas Funeral Home of Cleveland, John and Charlotte Yarbrough of John Signs, community servant, Nathaniel Grammer and Keith Fulcher and the Community Foundation of North West Mississippi to provide the fresh vegetables at no cost to the community.

“Realizing that we are in a food desert, we are excited to be able to offer these fresh vegetables,” DeVoyce C. Morris said.  “Our chapter of AKA is following one of the international initiatives of the sorority by focusing on community and home gardens,” Morris continued.  “The Enhance Our Environment Initiative (EOE) is chaired by Morris,” stated Evelyn Henry, Vice-President and Program Chairman of Chi Mu Omega Chapter. “Earlier this year, some chapter members were offered green bean seeds, a starter kit and directions for planting container and home gardens,” continued Henry.  “They have been very successful and are canning and freezing copious amounts of green beans,” Henry said.  

“Last year, we planted peas in the spring and greens in the fall,” said Morris.  “This year, we received a $2,000 grant from the Community Foundation of North West Mississippi; and, we are able to purchase more seeds and supplies and to enlist the services of our young people in planting and harvesting,” Morris continued.  

“The community collaboration garden has tremendously impacted county residents,” stated Geraldine C. Grammer, the co-chairman of the EOE Committee.  “We received a handwritten thank you note from Cleveland resident, Shirley Montgomery, expressing her appreciation for the vegetables,” Grammer continued.  According to Grammer, Montgomery’s letter in part read: “Thanks to Chi Mu Omega Chapter, my friends, Martha Jean and Betty and I were able to put up eight quart bags of peas each, plus we enjoyed catching up on the latest news as we picked peas.”

Chi Mu Omega Chapter invites the community to share in the blessing of the vegetables in the garden; however, there are guidelines to be followed.  Those who desire vegetables from the garden are asked to pick only what they will eat, do not sell the vegetables and to please volunteer to assist in maintaining the garden.

Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated ® (AKA), an international service organization, was founded on the campus of Howard University in Washington, D.C. in 1908. It is the oldest Greek-letter organization established by African American college-educated women.

Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated® is comprised of more than 360,000 initiated members in graduate and undergraduate chapters located in 12 countries, including the United States, Bahamas, Bermuda, Canada, Dubai, Germany, Japan, Liberia, Nigeria, South Korea, South Africa and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The International President and CEO is Danette Anthony Reed of Dallas, Texas.  Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority is often hailed as “America’s premier Greek-letter organization for African American women.”

Chi Mu Omega Chapter was chartered on December 6, 2003, at the Lampton Street Church of Christ in Mound Bayou with 16 charter members.  With an active membership of 82, the chapter is presently led by the president, Annie Y. Griffin, a native of Mound Bayou.  

For more information on the community collaboration garden, please call President Griffin at 662-812-7184 or EOE Chairman Morris at 662-719-0090. 

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Media Contact:  DeVoyce C. Morris

Email:  projectascend@yahoo.com

Phone:  662-719-0090

Founder:  Artistically yours, Art-cetera, Art-ceteraEmoji

Arts Enrichment Program, former St. Gabriel Mission School, Mound Bayou, Mississippi

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