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Ongoing Programming and Projects at the Growing Center

Children in Nature Initiative (CINI)


Started in 2010, the Children in Nature Initiative (CINI) is designed to increase the opportunities for children to have a direct learning experience in nature, while at the same time beginning to access the rich cultural diversity of Somerville, MA.

Defending the Early Years: Mini-Grant 2023

The CINI Program has evolved and grown since the COVID-19 pandemic. Most recently, the Friends of the Community Growing Center completed a project that was funded through a mini-grant from Defending the Early Years. The project report, titled  Children's Experiences in the Growing Center: Stories, Reflections, and Artifacts, explains this specific project in-depth. We are grateful to DEY for the awarding of this mini grant which supported this project. We will continue to collect the words and art of the children who visit the Growing Center regularly. 

If you are interested in learning more about the CINI program, contact Paula at

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