A Jewish community in metro-Detroit that embodies our tradition’s values of caring for ourselves, the other, and the environment.
Giving Gardens promotes resiliency and sustainability in our local Jewish community, through educational experiences centered around food, justice, and environmentalism.
- K’vod Ha-B’riot: Honor for all Human Beings
- Tzedek: Justice
- Tikkun Olam: Repairing the World
- Shomrei Adamah: Guardians of the Earth
- Participants will be empowered with the skills to grow and process their own food.
- Participants will better understand their local food system and its issues.
- Participants will have a strengthened connection to Judaism, through meaningful educational experiences.
- Programs will appeal to a diverse crowd, building bridges across social, economic, and religious groups.
- Giving Gardens will be a welcoming space to everyone, blurring the line between volunteer and client.
“The purpose of the Giving Gardens project is to merge the best that a hunger relief social service agency (like Yad Ezra) provides with the passion, innovation and education components found in social justice work. Broadening our volunteer base to include those interested in farming and food systems enables us to expand awareness about the needs of those living in SE Michigan who are food insecure. The Giving Gardens program has already made strong partnerships with agencies in SE Michigan dedicated to hunger relief, food sustainability and the value of growing locally.
All the Jewish holidays are connected to food (or lack of it) along with the seasons and the 7 species referred to in the Bible: wheat, barley, grapes, figs, pomegranates, olives and dates, so this project is a perfect fit for Yad Ezra. According to My Jewish Learning Website, “the flowering and fruiting of the seven species parallel our own spiritual development, characterized by self-improvement and preparation for receiving the Torah. Since the fruiting of the seven fruits is linked to our own spiritual achievement, it is not surprising that these seven kinds comprise a wealth of spiritual attributes, nutrients, and medicinal properties.”
While Yad Ezra continues to provide free, healthy groceries to food insecure families living in SE Michigan, our hope is to raise awareness and educate volunteers, clients and supporters by bringing them together to experience the benefits of planting and harvesting produce. We are mindful of our Jewish heritage, the connection and importance that Judaism dictates to us to help and educate those in need as well as the opportunities which are being provided to view food and hunger issues more holistically.”
– Opening remarks at the dedication of the Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Foundation Giving Gardens project featuring the Geri Lester Greenhouse.
Your gifts and support will help change the community! Make a donation to Giving Gardens!