In the spring of 2022 Garbage Hill Farm, an urban farm in McKinley Park, will work with a UIC Museum and Exhibition Studies class on a series of permanent public projects and a daylong event. Within our group there are community gardeners, activists, McKinley Park residents, and students for social justice, all working together on the creation of a free accessible public mutual aid garden, an ongoing free neighborhood seed library, a native plant seedling giveaway, as well as a series of free public programs centered around ideas of kinship, mutualism, and community.
The free seed library and mutual aid garden will be located in a quiet post-industrial corridor of Chicago’s McKinley Park Neighborhood at Garbage Hill Farm. This is a working class neighborhood full of industrious and resourceful gardeners. This neighborhood is 60 percent Latinx, 20 percent Asian, and 17 percent white. We are especially looking for vegetable and flower seeds that reflect the Latinx and Asian heritages of this neighborhood.
The seeds we have selected to share in the free seed library reflect the histories of some of the communities that live in the neighborhood, they also reflect the power of plants to address issues of pollution and climate change. Throughout the summer a rotation of crops will emerge and be free for all to self-harvest. We are working on seed donations so that we can start seedlings to plant in the mutual aid garden at our opening of the free seed library on May 7, 2022 just in time for the beginning of the spring planting season.
We are asking Awesome Foundation for $1000 to go toward the building of the free seed library. We plan to hire Building Brown Workshop, a neighborhood based Latin X owned fabrication studio to construct the outdoor library box. We have already secured funding for the soil and building the infrastructure for the mutual aid garden. This $1000 would complete our vision for a neighborhood resource centered around food justice and access.
Funded by Chicago, IL (February 2022)