The M’Finda Kalunga Community Garden began in 1982 as a group organizing to rid the Sara Roosevelt Park area of drugs and crime and to protect low-income housing and services in the neighborhood. This beautiful garden–almost a city block long–was born of that effort. Forty years later, some of the original organizers continue to garden at M’Finda Kalunga, along with many new friends, families and volunteers.
Garden members tend allocated plots and common areas, and periodically do garden-wide seasonal maintenance. There is a children’s area with a sandbox, a Bocce court and a patio area for events and gatherings. Tables and benches are dotted throughout the garden, where people can sit and picnic during open hours.
The garden hosts cultural celebrations: Halloween/Samhain, Chinese Moon Festival, Juneteenth, Cinco de Mayo, and Sukkot.
We also partner with local organizations and residents to ensure the garden is well used by the neighborhood.
There is always something happening in the garden: Urban Park Rangers day, It’s My Park Days, Senior and Head-Start Gardening classes, story hours, Pet Adoption Days, compost, chicken-care and raised-bed building workshops, live music, poetry readings, a housing round-table.
The community “donated” several chickens to the garden one night. We built a coop to house them and they have become the stars of the garden, fascinating children and donating eggs to the senior center.
There is a beautiful pond with koi, goldfish, and turtles where all kinds of birds love to splash and bathe.
We are dedicated to being an activist community garden as well as a place of respite. We welcome volunteers, visitors, and new members.
Best way to join: Come to a meeting (usually the second Sunday of the month between April – October 31).