In June of this year the All African Peoples Development and Empowerment project organized a garden collective in Philadelphia.
The garden collective is a group of about 8-10 different families that have agreed to work cooperatively to grow food, teach and learn from each other, and pool resources both material and human.
Following a model that AAPDEP used to organize families in Huntsville Alabama last year, the Philly Garden Collective planted their first seeds this spring.
There were a variety of different growing techniques that the gardeners used, from indoor containers, outside raised beds, and in the ground planting.
There are also a variety of skill levels involved from first time gardeners to those with over 20 years experience growing food.
After 2 organizing meetings at the home of AAPDEP member Dr. Michelle Strong Fields, the collective pooled their resources and purchased seeds, soil and starter plants.
Next, the collective held a work day where they met and planted containers for people to take home, distributed seeds and plants, and planted one in ground garden.
The collective has been sharing progress and tips through a group text line that they set up. This has been a good first planting season and our Philly forces have already begun discussing how to progress in the future. One idea is to establish a community garden.
AAPDEP’s goal is to use the Philly Garden Collective as a tool to organize the African community. We are in the process of recruiting all of the members of the collective who currently aren’t already to become members of AAPDEP.
We are also working to connect the Philly Garden Collective with the other AAPDEP agriculture work in Houston, Texas, Huntsville, Alabama, and soon in Sierra Leone and Oakland, California.
We have no doubt that the Philly Garden Collective will be a great tool to teach and learn skills, provide healthy food, and organize the African community towards our development.
If you or someone you know is interested in joining or supporting the Philly Garden Collective, please contact Jaleel Nash at 443 844 2545 or via email at email@example.com.