Watering Emma’s Acres will be a lot easier when the District of Mission installs a new water line later this year.
Volunteers with Long-term Inmates Now in the Community (LINC) Society, which operates the program, have been watering the five-acre garden by hand and recently asked the district for help.
The Hatzic property is owned by the district which originally planned to expand the Hatzic cemetery. According to a staff report to council, the need is not yet present, and the land was instead leased to the non-profit society for five years.
Since last year, LINC has made a number of improvements on the 20-acre site, such as clearing the property, improving site access, and pouring the foundation for a Quonset hut.
So far LINC has invested about $20,000 in the project, which will also benefit the district when the lease expires.
Extending the water line from the north side of Cemetery Avenue to Emma’s Acres will cost about $7,000, and it is work the district would have eventually had to undertake with the cemetery expansion.
LINC developed Emma’s Acres to help people impacted by the criminal justice system. Offenders coming out of jails are given a chance to develop a sense of community, and profits from the sale of produce support survivors of crime.
The vegetables, herbs, and flowers grown at Emma’s Acres are sold at the Mission City farmers’ market, but anyone who is a survivor of homicide gets anything sold at the LINC table free of charge. Some of the produce is also donated to other local non-profit groups, including the food bank and community kitchen.
For more information about LINC, visit lincsociety.bc.ca.