“Two faith based organizations have teamed up to help refugees in Austin. They’re doing it with, of all things, a garden.
There was music and balloons, so you know it’s a party. However there is also a garden smack dab in the middle of this celebration, so a garden party it is.
Two months ago, the Grow Together Team from Gateway Church along with Mobile Loaves and Fishes broke ground on this garden at the Capital Village Apartments in Central East Austin. The complex is home to numerous refugees….
‘What a great way to remember our new fellow citizens than by helping them out and people transitioning in’ said Michael McKee, the Director of Grow Together
The garden allows them to grow food and relationships with other refugees.
‘Like know each others feelings and what kinds of plants they grow in their country,’ said Kalpana Kharel, a refugee from Nepal. ‘Just working together.’
Even youngsters like Thangtinuk Sakawthang from Burma like working in the garden.
‘To do is fun,’ he said.
Besides Burma and Nepal, there are refugees from Africa, India, Iran and Iraq. On a wall surrounding the garden, refugees made chalk outlines of their hand prints. They wrote the names of their home countries as well.
Also participating are men like Danny and Jose. They used to be homeless, but now, through Mobile Loaves and Fishes, help cultivate the garden so the refugees can plant their food.
‘It makes me feel good that I’m giving back into the community and seeing the progress and smiles on people’s faces,’ said Jose Coronado, who works for Mobile Loaves and Fishes.
‘It’s not necessarily a bunch of different communities, homeless, refugees, whatever, it’s one community coming together,’ said McKee.”