MEGA to finish ag projects in Shelby
by Rory Doyle
Nov 02, 2012 | 1788 views | 0 0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The local agricultural nonprofit group MEGA will be receiving out-of-state help to complete infrastructure tasks at its site in Shelby this weekend.

MEGA, which stands for Mississippians Engaged in Greener Agriculture, wants to instill the values of locally grown produce and healthy eating habits for Delta residents.

Today and tomorrow, MEGA will get assistance finishing up projects at its location on 1503 Broadway Street in Shelby from fellow nonprofit Growing Power, based in Milwaukee, Wis.

Dorothy Grady-Scarbrough, creator of MEGA in 1999, has partnered with Growing Power multiple times in the past, and the group sent seven members last month to begin a greenhouse project.

"Growing Power is a great organization with a nationally known leader, Will Allen," said Grady-Scarbrough. "He has worked Michelle Obama and President Clinton to teach others about the importance of sustaining local fresh food on your own."

Growing Power aims to transform communities by supporting people from diverse backgrounds, and the environments in which they live, through the development of what they call Community Food Systems.

These systems provide high quality, safe, healthy and affordable food for all community residents.

These values are also reflected in MEGA's mission, which strives to work with youth, local food systems, schools, small fruit and vegetable farmers, churches and backyard and communities gardeners to make the Delta a healthier place.

"This weekend will be a two-fold experience," added Grady-Scarbrough. "Participants will be volunteering their time for a good cause, but this is also a great learning opportunity."

The goal for the weekend is to complete the greenhouse that will house an aquaponics project in which MEGA will maintain a tilapia fish population.

Grady-Scarbrough said the facility in Shelby has been a plentiful food source since the site opened in March of 2012.

"We have grown nine varieties of peppers, greens, butterbeans, squash, cucumbers and a fruit orchard with 19 fruit trees."

MEGA is still seeking volunteer support for this weekend's efforts, and those interested can contact Grady-Scarbrough at 662-402-4798.

Saturday's work will kick off at 9 a.m.

For more information on Growing Power, visit www.growingpower.org.