ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Thanksgiving may be the way many people celebrate the harvest, but growers serving one underserved Rochester community mark it by planning for the next planting.
A food forest is the latest addition to a Rochester neighborhood and School 17 this fall. It was added to be a healthy source in the community.
“I feel happy and soothing while making a garden because you’re starting another new life,” said Island Cook of Taproot Collective Summer Opportunities.
“As the seasons go through, different things will come into ripeness, be ready to be harvested,” said Leslie Knox, board chair of Taproot Collective. “But there’s always something over here that you can eat and that’s what we’re trying to teach and demonstrate. It doesn’t have to be everything from the store.”
Taproot Collective believes the garden will give students an opportunity to learn and provide them with another food option.
“We want to be part of the solution to some of the problems we see in our community,” said Knox.
Overall, the organization has a vision of getting quality housing, providing food access and having opportunities for everyone.
“One of the things that we do is we focus on making sure people understand that you can do these things in the city,” Knox said. “You can grow some of your own produce, you can have a community garden and we don’t necessarily want to reinvent the wheel while we’re at it.”
The organization believes its mission is part of the solution to fix issues in Rochester and make it a better place.
“Quite honestly we’re trying to seed the community with leaders,” said Knox. “So even if planting and getting your hands in the dirt is not your thing, we want you to understand this is something that can be done, this is something that benefits the community and maybe this something that your life is a little better for after having learned more about it.”
Taproot Collective says if people want a garden in their neighborhood, the organization can help make it possible.