Mixed Greens workshops cover more than just gardening and enjoying healthy foods, but also focus on how to care for the mind and spirit.
The group practices Mindfulness, dealing with emotions and stress by paying attention to how our bodies and mind feel within the present moment free from judgment, founders said.
Mixed Greens also teaches Whole Health, the integration of mind, body and spirit by implementing activities such as prayer, deep breathing, and being aware of healthier food choices.
They work to foster an open setting to share and listen to what everyone has to say in a non-judgmental environment, even tackling difficult topics like death and loss at their monthly Death Café events.
But on top of all of that, it’s really about having fun and engaging in the community together, Mathis said.
Johnny Smith, a founding member and setup coordinator, helps Mixed Greens remain an active part of the farmers market by attending every Saturday; a friendly presence with those he meets in the park.
Smith helped launch one of Mixed Greens’ first projects, the Little Green Wagon. The goal of the project is to help families and children learn the importance of growing their own food plants and vegetables.
Smith taught families how to grow their own food by assisting them with potted plants and instructing them how to care for the plants until they returned to the market again – imparting healthy skills which can last a lifetime.
“Whole Health is the integration of the mind, body, and spirit,” added Tricia Richardson, a founding member.
“Keeping this in mind, implementing healthy lifestyle habits for the community can help them to live life with longevity and peace of mind,” she said.
They have since hosted a range of workshops throughout the city thanks to partner organizations and community members, including Parent University, Wesley Oak United Methodist Church, Savannah Urban Garden Alliance, Bahá’Í Unity Center, Savannah Council of the Blind and more.
Recently, the group launched a new Stress Reduction Series to meet the need they saw for people wanting to know more about managing stress and handling emotions during this time of self-isolation.
While many of their current programs have moved online virtually amid the coronavirus pandemic, the group hopes to partner with more community groups in the near future, to expand their network and message of inclusion.
“I see Mixed Greens continue to work and build our presence in the community,” Mathis shared.
Find Mixed Greens at The Forsyth Farmers Market from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays in Forsyth Park.