A Black Queer & Trans Garden in Bed-Stuy
Our garden space is centering Black queer and trans/gnc folks who have been historically deterred from joining community garden spaces and accessing GreenThumb and NYC parks owned spaces. We believe that Black trans, non-binary, gender non-conforming, and queer people deserve respite, space to plant, harvest, skillshare, read, and learn from other Black queer and trans folks in nature. We deserve to be affirmed and protected, to be celebrated and to have space to celebrate ourselves.
In Brooklyn, the majority of gardens are run by older, cis, straight, able bodied, people. From GreenThumb NYC down to the individual garden level, we havent seen any in-depth policies, programs, or initiatives to better and more intentionally include youth and people who are disabled, especially Black queer and trans people, who have the highest rates of disability, among other indicators of social marginalization. We were kicked out of a garden in our community due to being queer and trans and realized that there are many other young people in the city who have faced similar discrimination within the city's garden network, from ageist, sexist, homophobic coordinators to a real failure of accessibility for disabled and working class folks. Many Black queer and trans folks rely on mutal aid networks, networks of support, and collectives run by Black trans people. We deserve space, safety, and beauty and we hope to structure this garden around these needs.
The AwesomeNYC grant will go toward basic garden startup in the coming months including soil, paying volunteers to help cultivate the land and test the soil, a local carpenter who has agreed to help build benches, plant beds, shelves, and a small book box for the street. In addition, the garden will be featured on Black-Owned Brooklyn in September.
Funded by New York City, NY (August 2020)