The Bethel Community Life Center and Ardmore Victory Gardens are a ministries of Bethel African-Methodist Episcopal Church in Ardmore, PA. Founded in 1895 by Black residents of the Mainline, Bethel AME is heavily involved in the local community, hosting social justice programs that address food insecurity, educational inequality, public health, and many other needs in the community. The current pastor Rev. Carolyn C. Cavaness has been instrumental in leading the congregation in founding the the Ardmore Victory Gardens, a community garden that grows fresh produce to supply food banks throughout the area.
SOCIAL JUSTICE CONNECTION
The work will focus on a number of social justice issues. The community garden work addresses both sustainability and creation-care, as well as access increasing food security and access to healthy produce. The vaccine clinics create opportunities to address public health concerns. The Juneteenth celebration invites the community into the liberating work of anti-racism and the cause of social equity, and the music series focuses on building community partnerships and highlighting local artists.
POSSIBLE WORK ASSIGNMENTS
The specifics of the internship can be worked out between the needs of Bethel AME Church and the interests of the intern. If the intern is more heavily interested in the community garden, the intern could support the work of the community garden, which will be relocated for Summer 2024 to Haverford College. The Community Garden will host tea workshops, "How to Harvest" workshops, and tactile and thematic site visits for the community. The intern could assist in making site visits to multiple home-based gardens to those who need assistance for accessibility reasons. The intern might meet with local youth once a week to share about some aspect of the work of the community garden.
If the intern is more drawn to other aspects of community outreach, the intern might be involved in the planning and execution of the vaccine clinic, the Juneteenth celebration, and the community music series. A combination of foci may be worked out with the site.
Driving around may be a part of this internship, so the ability to become a vehicle-certified driver with Villanova would be a requirement. Regardless of the intern's emphasis, participation and assistance at the Juneteenth celebration will be required.
Bethel AME's Website