In addition, volunteers from the Arroyo Timebank joined the others to work on preparing the empty Pasadena city lot, located at 747 North Fair Oaks Avenue, to become an educational garden. The City of Pasadena Public Works has provided truckloads of mulch. All volunteers have spread the mulch; planter beds were built to grow herbs and vegetables; and river rocks were laid to landscape. The Armory Center for the Arts offered art workshops on decorating planters and plant terra cota pots that will be used in the garden.
“This ongoing collaborative project between Hillsides, H100 and the Armory to grow the garden is an example of nonprofits and community volunteers working together to bring emotional healing to vulnerable children as well as restoration to nature,” said Joseph M. Costa, Hillsides chief executive officer, adding that spending time outside in a garden positively affects our emotions and improves our sense of well-being.
While the Armory’s mission is to build on the power of art to transform lives and communities through creating, teaching and presenting the arts, Hillsides brings stability, healing and permanence in the lives of vulnerable children and families.
“With everyone invested in working on this project together, the effort has been seamless,” said Johanna Campos, Armory school programs coordinator.”
The children have continued to visit and participate in the garden by weeding the plot, preparing the soil and planting edible seeds.
“As nature has been shown to be beneficial for our overall health and well-being, this collaborative project is an effective way of combining both the missions of the Armory and Hillsides,” said Costa.