Arkansas Interfaith Power & Light, the Environment Mission and Outreach Team of Interfaith Arkansas, and partners celebrated “Love Your Neighbor Day,” February 11, 2017 at the Promise Garden at 12th & Peyton Streets, Little Rock.
18 women, men and youth prepared rows for planting, assembled compost bins, prepared a plot for a new hoop house, spread mulch, fed chickens, gathered eggs and enjoyed a hot lunch. Volunteers were from the Bowen Law School, Second Presbyterian Church, Stephens School and Neighbors That Love. Locals received tighten-up gift bags with LED bulbs and power strips to help with energy efficiency at home.
The garden is based on the concept of civic ecology, where neighbors create community ties, reclaim abandoned lots, prepare soil, plant seeds, water growth, harvest crops, cook fresh organic food and share a meal. The Promise Garden was planted several years ago in an area that is both a food desert (no fresh food) and a food swamp (too much pre-packaged food, too little nutrition). Neighbors who work in the garden take home the fruits of their labors. Through shared learning about local gardens, neighbors connect the Food Justice movement to the Environmental Justice Movement.
The next community volunteer day is March 25. An Earth Day observance will be held on April 22 with music and “Celebrate Dirt” activities. All are welcome. Contact email@example.com or (501) 772-9906.