Keep Texas Beautiful has selected the City of Santa Fe to receive its Government Award for making a positive difference in its community and enhancing the environment for its citizens. Santa Fe was chosen as the 2018 winner for cities with less than 30,000 population and will be presented its award at the Keep Texas Beautiful Annual Conference in Rockwall on June 18-20, 2019.
The City is being honored for boldly supporting the revitalization of the Keep Santa Fe Beautiful (KSFB) organization and for its support to transform an under-utilized park into a therapeutic garden.
In 2018, while its community addressed the impacts from Hurricane Harvey and the horrific shooting at the local high school, the City of Santa Fe embraced a unique approach to help its residents heal by providing property to create a place of peace and serenity. Santa Fe approved a proposal from the non-profit Keep Santa Fe Beautiful to convert the Mae S. Bruce Park on Main Street to a garden, specifically designed to help those with trauma, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder. The area will be reconfigured and feature plants of calming scents and vision, walking trails, and seating areas.
Under new leadership, KSFB proposed the idea to the City in June 2018 and before the end of the year, preliminary ground work and new fencing had been completed with assistance from the City, as well as other companies providing in-kind services and materials. KSFB continues to move the plan forward with an expected completion date later this year. The local volunteer organization is sponsoring an Earth Day Festival, April 27, with free activities for the family and with opportunities to help raise the funds for the Garden. For more details, go to, http://www.keepsantafetxbeautiful.org/
Once the Garden is ready, the space will be the home of nature-based therapy classes and programs offered by the Resiliency Center, a facility nobly opened by the City of Santa Fe immediately after the shooting that offers free mental health services and resources to its community.
As partners, the City of Santa Fe, the Resiliency Center, and Keep Santa Fe Beautiful continue to work together to enhance their neighborhoods and empower others to make Santa Fe and Texas a better and more beautiful place.