History and
mission

History and
mission

History and
mission

Our History

Baltimore Green Space was founded in 2007 by a group of community gardeners who wanted to see their communities’ treasured open spaces remain available to residents.

Since our modest beginning, when we preserved one small thriving community garden facing development pressure, we’ve grown to protect over 7 acres of community-led gardens, pocket parks, and forests, and we serve residents who are dedicated to preserving open spaces throughout the City. We are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

Founder and Former Executive Director

In 2004, Miriam Avins and her neighbors started the Homestead Harvest Community Garden as an organic, cooperative garden serving the Better Waverly neighborhood. The garden turned an abandoned vacant lot that attracted drug use into a place of beauty and peace that provides fresh produce for about a dozen families. In 2006, when the garden was threatened by a possible sale of the lot, Miriam began researching how to preserve open spaces managed by neighborhoods. In 2007, she and three other community gardeners founded Baltimore Green Space, and Miriam was awarded an Open Society Institute Community Fellowship to develop the land trust.

In her work at Baltimore Green Space, Miriam has published white papers on community-managed open space; stewardship practices of land trusts; and Baltimore’s forest patches. In 2010 she was awarded the Aileen Hughes Award for Leadership in Land Conservation for her work with Baltimore City to establish a straight-forward way to preserve community-managed open spaces. She also spearheaded efforts to provide access to municipal water for community gardens. Miriam currently serves on Baltimore City’s Commission on Sustainability.

Our Mission

Baltimore Green Space is Baltimore’s environmental land trust. We promote vibrant neighborhoods and a healthy environment through land preservation, research, and community advocacy.

Our vision is to be a leader and partner in ensuring that communities’ open spaces and forest patches are considered priority assets in the growth and redevelopment of Baltimore. We believe that green spaces provide unmatched opportunities for recreation, civic engagement, and community revitalization. It is essential to retain existing natural spaces that have ecological value and biodiversity. Our impact includes the scientifically documented social, health, environmental, and economic benefits that create strong neighborhoods and a vibrant city.

Do you live near a forest patch? See how we can
help.

Helpful guides, ideas, and more to improve your green space.

See all the ways we’re making a difference in Baltimore.