Madison Park Development Corp.
Ms. Regina is a resident of “Madison Park Village”, a vibrant affordable-housing community in Roxbury, Mass. Through the grant support of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation, Madison Park Development Corporation (MPDC) has greatly expanded its healthy food, cooking and garden programs for children and community members, like Ms. Regina.
During a visit to MPDC , we witnessed the organization’s incredible volunteer-run, healthy meal + recipe delivery in action—serving 105 older residents a week throughout COVID-19. Plus, MPDC was able to safely open its urban garden area, providing a peaceful haven and fresh veggies to many residents.
Enjoy this inspirational message of gratitude and hope from one of MPDC’s gardeners:
WHY HOPE COMMUNITY GARDEN
I sincerely wish I could be with you today and to tell the world why Hope Community Garden is one of my favorite spaces in Boston. Honestly, this garden is a perfect community space. It is walk-able and every day at least seven bus routes pass this little hidden treasure in Roxbury between the O’Bryant Exam School and the Roxbury Post Office.
Hope Community Garden is truly a space of expectation and a belief in tomorrow. From the tilling of the land to the harvesting of our plants, we anticipate a bountiful crop of healthy mustard greens, turnips, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, eggplants, jalapeno peppers, lettuce, and more. We create for our tables and share our produce with the tables of others.
Gardening at Hope helps us to better appreciate food and its value. Being able to play in the mud, planting, replanting, pruning and watching those plants grow is an accomplishment, especially for our eager and curious kid gardeners. We come together to get our hands dirty in the soil as we build the spirit of community and a much desire sense of belonging to this space.
Hope provides a natural relief from anxiety and hopelessness, much so during this COVID-19 pandemic. It is a place of peace, relaxation, joy and laughter. A place of bonding with a diverse population of folks from across the world. It aids me in meditation and connection to the natural world. Sometimes, I enter that gate very early just to sit and focus…then I proceed to the gardening activities. That is my secret.
Hope is also a space of continuous learning. We learn from each other and we are given opportunities to enroll in free Master Gardening Classes and to attend annual gardening events.
Hope is about the future and I anticipate seeing Hope’s redesign to create a more welcoming entrance- a sense of invitation, a suggestion of anticipation and wandering with beautiful flowers, scent filled herbs and paths along the edge of the fence. One path for slower-paced adults and another for our little bouncy kids floating in the air with the energy of a Duracell battery. Each path inviting us to sit, eat, drink or engage in other activities.
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