Garden Time, Inc.

At A Glance


Kate Lacouture


Providence, Rhode Island

Primary Issue Area:

  • Food
  • Environmental Health
  • Living Economies

Active since:


Tax Status:


Core volunteers:


Our Purpose

Garden Time provides educational programs that teach incarcerated men and women how to grow food and related green industry skills for their own economic and personal well-being, integrating job readiness skills and reentry support. Additionally, we provide community-based green industry job training for formerly incarcerated Rhode Islanders. Our programs foster inspiration, and empowerment, and help trainees connect to opportunities that enable their successful and permanent reentry into society.In 2011, we worked with men serving sentences of life without parole at the RI ACI to build a garden in an empty section of prison yard. Since then, we have added two more gardens within the prison complex, and trained some 300 incarcerated men and women to become skilled gardeners. While producing thousands of pounds of produce for use in the prison kitchens, our participants have also gained self-confidence, a positive outlook, and a completely new connection to nature. In 2017 we expanded our work to include more explicit job training and in 2021, we expanded to the community.Our mission is put in stark relief by one gardener’s words: “This program has allowed me to learn things I never thought were possible for a guy who has sold narcotics and helped destroy communities. I intend on following up what I have learned from Kate and Vera on the streets to help give back and help in the positive development of the same communities I helped to destroy.”