CHICAGO (TOC) — A backyard in Chicago’s Englewood neighborhood is doing extra than simply rising greens.
It was created as an area the place folks in the neighborhood can plant seeds for peace and private development.
Earl’s Backyard Mae’s Kitchen is all about therapeutic, and this 12 months’s focus is on psychological well being.
“The power I believe it brings, is constructive, and I believe folks admire one thing lovely to have a look at,” Mekazin Alexander of Earl’s Backyard Mae’s Kitchen mentioned.
And exquisite it’s, nevertheless it wasn’t all the time.
5 years in the past, Alexander purchased an empty lot close to the nook of 69th Avenue and Perry Avenue and created a flourishing neighborhood backyard to feed neighbors from close to and much.
“We have now kale, three varieties of kale, we have now collards, we have now Swiss chard, tomatoes and bush beans,” Mekazin mentioned.
However the house does a lot extra.
“This 12 months we’re focusing extra on psychological well being,” Mekazin mentioned. “Yearly for the previous three years we have all the time had group counseling. However this 12 months we have added some bodily motion with that… it is a method for youth to be current, find out about their religious selves, bodily selves and their psychological well being is so vital proper now.”
Alexander additionally teamed up with the Chicago Park District to create a program to assist Chicago youth give again to their neighborhood by serving to within the backyard.
Laniah Moon skilled trauma whereas out in Colorado for college. She got here again house to search out therapeutic and landed right here. She’s been coming again ever since.
“Artwork and gardening comes collectively, therapeutic occurs, and with that, like, I knew that I wished therapeutic by neighborhood and the backyard trigger I do know that I’ve a inexperienced thumb and I like working with the earth and so I got here again yearly,” she mentioned.
The house not solely offers meals for the neighborhood, however holds enjoyable occasions too, like open mic nights, film nights and extra, making lasting recollections and leaving an enduring impression on so many.
To be taught extra about Earl’s Backyard Mae’s Kitchen, go to their pages on Instagram and Fb.
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