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And thus we start another garden season with the children of the Capuchin Soup Kitchen. This is the 20th season of gardening for our children! The mission of the Rosa Parks Youth Program at the Soup Kitchen emphasizes education, creativity and peacemaking. The program helps youth think clearly, make choices wisely, learn alternatives to violence, and care for themselves and the entire Earth community. The Rosa Parks Peace Garden develops this mission in the practical work of gardening: reinforcing basic job skills and requirements such as timeliness, teamwork, accountability, mutual respect for co-workers and completion of tasks. It is a time of learning and of confidence building so that the children may not only obtain better jobs in the future but also keep them.
Rosa Parks graduates reflect on program’s lasting impact
Given the issues of intolerance for differences in our country and in the rest of the world, the youth still find confidence in who they are and their contributions to society/the earth. During a poetry workshop last year the youth were given the prompt I am then were told to write 5 lines describing who they are in relation to the world around them. 2 lines were chosen from each person to create a beautiful group poem.