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In the heart of Anderson, SC, nestled within a historic mill village, lies a beacon of hope and growth: The Cleo Bailey Experiment. Founded in the spring of 2020, our nonprofit stands as a testament to community resilience and the power of collective effort.


At our core, we are guardians of a cherished local landmark — a retired schoolhouse built in 1913, spanning 28,000 square feet on a verdant 2-acre property. Though yet to be refurbished, this schoolhouse is more than a building; it's a symbol of our commitment to revitalize and serve this community.


Our mission is simple but profound: to bring vital services and educational opportunities to the families of our neighborhood, many of whom have modest means but immeasurable spirit. We believe in the dignity of self-sufficiency and the right to equity for all. This belief is the foundation of our thriving urban garden, which, in the 2023 growing season, yielded nearly 3,000 pounds of produce. This bounty doesn't just feed; it nurtures, as it supplements groceries for approximately 100 local families.


But our vision extends beyond nourishment. Education is at the heart of what we do. Through our garden, we offer classes that illuminate the origins of food and teach sustainable cultivation methods. Our 14 raised beds, open to the public, are not just plots of soil; they are classrooms where people can learn, grow, and connect with the earth and each other.


The Cleo Bailey Experiment is more than a nonprofit. It's a movement, powered by local donations, tireless volunteers, and a belief in a brighter future. Join us as we restore the schoolhouse, cultivate our garden, and nurture our community. Together, we can grow a better tomorrow.


“A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in”

Greek proverb

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