Letter from Lucia

I have grown up going to a community garden across the street from my house since I was born. Most of my childhood memories come from there. This garden was built by a courageous man. His name is Bob Humber. His skin is the color of dark soil and he has sad but kind eyes. Back in the 80s, he found this patch of land, which was a place where people went to do drugs or sell them. He thought that there was so much more to life than this, so he went to the city board and got permission to build a community garden. Bob got the neighborhood people together, and they began to build a garden instead of doing drugs and committing crime. It wasn’t easy but they achieved their goal.

This garden was one of the first big improvements in this neighborhood. The garden is named the M’Finda Kalunga Community Garden because it was built on an old African burial ground. The name means “garden at the edge of the other side of the world.” M’Finda Kalunga is open three days a week to the public. It has multicultural festivals that bring people together for free and create a warm community.

This garden means a lot to me. I have been coming and participating as a member of its community. I have a group of friends from the garden who share the same memories from it as I. From planting flowers each season to playing hide and seek behind the trees and digging for worms; it is a little sanctuary where anyone can go to be in nature. Bob is responsible for making this garden possible and making it thrive. To this day whenever I walk by the garden, I see Bob sitting there at the gate, just like old times, and remember all the memories I had and am still making behind those gates.

Lucia Bell-Epstein (13)

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