A garden. A community.
Like most of FIFABQ’s projects, the Accessible Garden program started with a seed of an idea and the energy to build a better community.
I received a message from a supporter Kari, who was seeking helpers to build a front yard garden for her cousin Jorge. He had been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis and could no longer garden. I was inspired by Kari’s request and quickly offered to meet with Jorge to see how FIFABQ could help.
I asked him three important questions.
“What do you need?”
“What do you want?”
“What are your biggest dreams?”
Jorge has a personality that is magnetic. Talking with him left me feeling as though we could in fact do anything!
With a deeper understanding of who Jorge was and what he needed. I jumped to work.
A local business had offered to not only sponsor the garden but to bring out their work crew to install the new accessible space.
After a month of planning and coordinating, it was time to get to work! We had more than 20 sets of helping hands to get the job done. They worked above and beyond what we had envisioned! Our kind donor also ordered Rudy’s BBQ for the day’s meal to be shared by all.
“I started gardening a few years ago and it’s something I do to live my best life,” he said. “Now my MS has challenged me again and with your help and raised bed I’m able to continue living my best life and not let MS stop me.”
“I am blessed to have an accessible garden,” Jorge said. “They (Erin and Trista) gave me plants, helped me plant them and taught me about garden.”
This season Jorge harvested tomatoes, squash, zucchini, Blue Hubbard squash, strawberries, grapes, onions, potatoes, carrots and lettuce, which he also shared with his neighbors. He has grown a garden and built a community.