New Orleans Part 3: Our School at Blair Grocery

Part 1 HERE & Part 2 HERE

Wednesday and Thursday (June 14 & 15) brought our group to the lower 9th ward to a place called Our School at Blair Grocery. A former New York City teacher moved to the area about 10 years ago and purchased a bunch of vacant lots and an old grocery store to start an urban garden as a means of getting kids off the street and giving them something productive to do in the summers, while improving their health at the same time.

When we got there on Wednesday, Turner (the former teacher), showed us around. Some of the students worked with him to sort through the fruit and vegetables for the compost pile. Every day he gets a load of food from a grocery store that they would normally throw out. Some of it has gone bad and goes straight to the compost pile, some of it goes to the goats (if they like it, because goats are surprisingly picky), and the fruit that is still good gets eaten by Turner and the kids in the neighborhood. Sometimes that is all they will eat in a day. Continue reading “New Orleans Part 3: Our School at Blair Grocery”

New Orleans Part 2: ARC of Greater New Orleans

Monday (June 12) was our first day of service work in New Orleans.

I was really excited because I knew that my team would be going to a place called ARC. ARC provides employment for adults with disabilities, and they help the environment by recycling Mardi Gras beads. I was told we would get to work with the employees sorting and repackaging beads, and we would learn a little about Mardi Gras in the process.

We were a little late to get to the warehouse in the morning because we couldn’t find it. We stopped to check the map again and eventually realized we were parked right next to it; we just couldn’t see that it was on the other side of a fence. Continue reading “New Orleans Part 2: ARC of Greater New Orleans”