Rain Water Capture System - Project Description
Three years ago, Throop UU Church was a congregation on the precipice of change. A meager but enthusiastic community remained and decided to make a change that would establish Throop UU as the Eco-Spiritual leader in Pasadena, California. Eco-warriors donned their wide brimmed hats and picked up shovels. They exposed the soil below, cracked and in need of healing and helped to breathe new life into Throop’s patch of Earth. That day and over the next few years, the congregation was reborn. Possibility for life and growth appeared where hope had seemed lost not long before.
From those seeds of change sprouted the church “where the garden is”. Throop is now a “living billboard” for our church’s environmental passion with a garden of life, built by the love of our congregation and community partners. The beautiful little church on a busy corner in Pasadena, California is now a locally recognized center for learning about nature’s interdependence.
Every aspect of creating the garden had to be considered carefully. The dream for its creators was a fully sustainable, organic-permaculture, teaching and meditation garden. Every day dozens of people walk through the garden; they smell the beautiful flowers, they salivate over the ripening apples, and they stop to talk to our member/gardeners. The community is paying attention.
The food we eat and the water we drink is fundamental to our well-being and existence. Learning how that food and water is produced and cared for is just as important. We have fallen as a society in our health and vitality. Clean food and water have the power to heal.
Throop has become a locally recognized environmental learning center and our plan is to expand its scope and reach. Rainwater harvesting has now become critical to keeping our drought-prone region supplied with water for essential needs. Harvested water will help to water the fruit trees and food beds. Roof runoff which is temporarily captured will filter through the garden soils and return, cleaned, to the ground where it can recharge local aquifers and help oceans heal. Capturing rainwater for garden use will spare valuable, drinking-quality water currently used for this purpose. As climate change impacts us all unpredictably, we shall be harnessing the gifts nature bestows on us to survive and thrive.
Throop has a chance to become a nexus for water harvesting education and training as well as sustainable permaculture in our community. We have the full support of local city government and the endorsement of the Transition Pasadena Community, among other partners. Please help us raise $5000 for the installation of Throop’s very own rainwater harvesting and education program. We are ready to make our dream a reality as soon as we reach our modest financial goal.
Those special friends who donate $1000 or more will be recognized in our Water Appreciation weekend which will be the first weekend in September. Everyone is encouraged to come out for our celebration featuring our annual Water Communion.
How does your project claim Unitarian Universalism?
“We seek to act as a moral force in the world, believing that ethical living is the supreme witness of religion. The here and now and the effects our actions will have on future generations deeply concern us.” We are the caretakers of this planet. We must do our job and do it well. Water is vital to survival. Throop’s water catchment/harvesting project will enhance our ability to teach and inspire the community around us to join in as Eco-warriors. We, along with the broader UU community can become the change we wish to see in the world, one rain barrel at a time.
How is your project claimed by Unitarian Universalism?
The principles of UU are evident in our plan to enhance our garden teaching center by adding the rainwater harvesting system. We appreciate the inherent worth and dignity of every person. Nothing makes people feel more alive and confident in their own abilities like cradling a seedling into the life of a plant. Being able to provide food for yourself and others deepens your understanding of the inherent worth and dignity of every person and every living thing. We accept one another and encourage spiritual growth in our congregations. Every member of our congregation has unique talents and gifts. The water harvesting project is just one more area our wonderful congregation may share creativity and environmental knowledge. Working together helps build an appreciation of our strengths and differences. This is how we come together and celebrate. We believe in the right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large. Throop UU is excited and ready to move forward in our long awaited and anticipated Rainwater Harvesting System. Conscience is the largest voice in our gardening process. We share the goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all. We think our learning garden exemplifies this principle. We see a world where everyone can do their part to heal this earth. We respect the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part. Come to Throop UU, “the Church with the Garden” to sit for a moment on the bench by the hypertufa fountain. The harvesting of water is just one more part in the web of Throop’s garden and the garden of life of which we are all a part.