I wish I could have recorded some of the wise and wonderful things our community kiddos had to contribute to the conversation around what is going to come out of this difficult event. The message was clear though, we will make something beautiful together!
We also made use of what we had. We collected some lettuce seeds, and radish seeds from the plants we had started at the Community House Garden. I love to let them see the full cycle. To plant, and collect seed, and plant again is so empowering. Also, it looked a lot like they had poisoned the garden behind the Art Garage. There were dark, completely black and dead areas that were in rather round shapes as if the did a big glug of poison from a bucket or jug.
We just decided to rake up the whole area. There were a bunch of "volunteer" tomato plants in one of our garden boxes as well. We made use of these over crowded plants and brought them over to the Art Garage garden. Maybe it isn't quite as beautiful as it was, but it was uplifting to move forward from the hurt and disappointment. These types of experiences can either lead to depression, and helplessness, or hope and resilience. We need resilient kids!
It was devastating to come home from an education conference and find our garden destroyed, but we have had an outpouring of support from our community, and the kids are ready to rebuild.
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So, instead of our traditional First Apprentice programming, this Friday we will be gardening all afternoon. I had the kids come up with what they would like to plant. We might have to go over a bit about climate since we had bananas, mangos, oranges and lemons on our list for the new garden.
Although heartbroken, there is a lesson in this experience. We talked about the rights of the city. At first the kids weren't sure. It seemed to them that the city can do anything. What about the right of the private citizens, the property owners, or even tenants? They had never thought of themselves as having rights, especially in relation to the city.
The lesson of this was a powerful one for our Kindness Ambassadors. There is no reason to allow others to abuse or mistreat us. There is also no reason to retaliate with violence or destruction. We can respectfully express our anger through outlets like the media and social media. We can ban together and work to make changes that will prevent this from happening again.
Hope springs eternal, like the beautiful abundant goodness of Mother Nature.
I went away for two weeks to an incredible workshop focused on singing and literacy. When I came home, excited because our blueberry bushes were about ready to produce so many berries, I was horrified to find that the city had completely mowed down our garden.
Mint, cucumbers planted by our Art Garage kiddos, rosebushes, the blueberry bushes, and even our apple tree were on the hit list.
I literally fell on the ground shouting "WHY?" at the top of my lungs. Truly there is no explanation.
Because my grass was too long? That is ridiculous.