Ken Lam took this photo a couple years ago inside a small garden in the east village, NYC. The small park used to be an apartment complex that got burned down and the land became a neighborhood communal garden. I love it! There are greens, ferns, and even a pond. I used to live in the East Village in an apartment we used to call the youtube house because Brooke Alley Brodack, Caitlin Hill and I lived there.
I love gardening so much. When I interned for English as a second language at the San Pedro Elementary school, in San Rafael, California, I spent my free time constructing a garden. Since most of the students are low income latinos, there is little help with nutrition. This is because the school district applied and was granted subsidized lunches. The sad part is, the food is all microwave burritos, donuts, and hot dogs. There is little to no nutritional value for these growing children. I built a garden there and planted tomatoes, lettuce, carrots, relish, celery, and other nutritional garden plants. The 3rd grade class and I made a large salad party at the end of the year and the kids were able to learn about nutrition while building a garden.
The summer before building this garden at the children’s school, I spent the summer building a garden in Oaxaca Mexico with Amigos De Las Americas. This was to help fight infant mortality in Oaxaca. One out of three babies will die from malnutrition there this year. It’s because their mother’s don’t have the resources and education to integrate nutritional grains and vegetables into their traditional recipes. I worked on organizing cooking lessons as well as the construction of a large garden. We planted amaranth grains and other plants.
Tags: sarah austin