Urban gardening has become central to our mission strategy. Creation began in a garden, and it seems fitting that gardening is where we find our place in the re-creation story too! We are amazed year after year at how transformational gardening together can be.
As an example, Innovation Youth’s urban gardening initiative grew this year as we partnered together with some amazing new friends from the Native Women’s Shelter, as well as some neurodiverse students from Summit School. Over eight weeks, our teen interns made new friends, learned new skills, and gained a perspective on lasting change in our city. A wonderful team spirit developed and they literally tasted the fruit of their labour, like some amazing rhubarb jam!
In Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, the Garden Gang reached new heights, literally, with a new rooftop garden installation. With the support collected by the youth of Entr’Ados, and with the help of some handy men and women, students installed a superb green space on the roof of their community centre. The manual work required them to creatively design their space, make use of different tools and materials, and above all work together to solve problems (like building cages to keep the squirrels out).
Freshly picked produce quickly made its way to a local farmers market where the neighbourhood could appreciate the harvest and learn of their program. The amount of skills gained, and the confidence these kids have gained is remarkable and will truly be life changing for them.