This garden was built by community members in 1988 on three former city-owned lots. Its name refers to the hopes of area residents that it be a haven from the city streets and a source of pride for the community that surrounds it.
Since 1988, community members have used the Garden of Happiness as a neighborhood gathering spot. For community residents, the Garden is more than a natural refuge; it is a focus of community activity and cultural exchange. Members of the garden have organized voter registration drives, census outreach programs, workshops on agriculture and soil testing, as well as food drives for the homeless.
The Garden of Happiness continues to provide community members with a rallying point, a safe haven, and a source of neighborhood pride. Karen Washington, a member of the Garden Happiness, said of the community’s gardening activities: “What we have we should take pride in. And that’s what we’re trying to instill throughout the neighborhood.”
Karen Washington has lived in New York City all her life, and has spent decades promoting urban farming as a way for all New Yorkers to access to fresh, locally grown food.
Each bottle of hot sauce purchased directly supports The Garden of Happiness as well as many other gardens with vibrant social missions to strengthen the fabric of urban neighborhoods.
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