Agape is a Greek word that means unconditional love. That's been the guiding force of Agape Outreach Homes for more than three decades.
The nonprofit provides housing and care and life skills training for men with mental illness. It also provides a sense of family. A garden keeps the family fed both physically and spirituality.
"It helps us with the food bill," executive director Benjamin Wethingon said.
The garden is next to one of the Agape Outreach Homes in Fountain City.
Agape cares for two dozen clients in three locations. The men work in the garden and eat what it yields.
"It's a good community project for the guys to get involved. From the planting it to weeding it to harvesting it," Wethington said.
The harvest is abundant.
"We use what we can use. We put up in our freezers. We do everything we can to help our program sustain. And then we want to give to the community," he said.
They donate to widows and low income people, and he'll give the vegetables to anyone who wants them.
"The crop we give it away to the community. We will package it. Then we partner with the Church of the Good Shepherd beside us," he said.
They set up tents and give it away on Thursdays.
"I want to give more. I want to give more to the community and that's why we did the second garden," Wethington said.
The second garden about a half-mile away. At this time last year it was just grass.
"I was mowing the yard and I kept saying, 'God, I really want more land. I want to help more people.' And clear as day I heard God say, 'Put a garden here.' And I had never thought of that before," Wethington said.
The garden he planted in good soil has thrived.
"This ground is amazing. Seriously. It produces so much more vegetables than the other one I've had for 12 years," he said.
Wethington would love to have some volunteers outside the program.
"Manpower would be awesome to have, or woman power, any power, to help us be bigger and to help us help more people," he said.
The new garden provides more food, and something else.
"I don't have to mow," he said.