Aeternal Garden - Let's Save the JBOLC Community Space!

Today's nature share takes on a more somber tone as we advocate for the survival of our favorite Bronx community space.

It's no secret that we love the James Baldwin Outdoor Learning Center. It's where we go on Saturdays to pick up our fresh produce; drop off our food scraps; perform live music; gather with local creatives and meet new neighbors. JBOLC is our home base: it's where we convene with another and connect with the earth, our healer. 

We grew to love the JBOLC garden in September, as it was the first public place we could take our then two-year-old daughter, Amalia, when the world started opening up again. Amalia is very outgoing and extraverted, and like all of us, she experienced a certain degree of social isolation in 2020. The JBOLC garden filled a void in our family life, allowing us to touch the land and people around us after a year of disconnection.

On Monday, we were disheartened to learn that this beloved garden is under attack by the city. That evening, members of the JBOLC staff watched as the Building Council ground crew chopped away at trees that JBOLC had been nurturing for five years. The JBOLC staff then learned that the Building Council is planning to destroy the majority of the garden landscape.

Today, we're participating in a press conference to share why the JBOLC garden should be preserved for this beautiful, thriving community. We will speak about the garden's significance in our weekly rhythm and advocate for the protection of this delicate social ecosystem. 

The casual destruction of the JBOLC garden is not just disappointing: it's unethical. This garden is a space for people of all backgrounds to assemble with one another and connect with the earth. With the the majority of JBOLC Farmer's Market vendors being BIPOC and/or women, this space represents an up-and-coming network of entrepreneurship, self-care, and mutual aid. Further, the garden has served as a venue for local support in a time of global chaos.

Our mission at Aeternal Lovers is to guide people back to sacred Black Goddess energy and to reconnect to the earth as a community. Science and folk history alike show us that nature is our home and our healer. In that vein, we're drawing attention to the Building Council's sheer indifference and utter disregard of the thriving ecosystem we've built as a collective. These gardens may not be protected by a municipal power structure, but it's our right as a community to maintain our growing space.

What do you have to say about the JBOLC garden and farmer's market? Please share your opinions & insights below.

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