Families from the Dawoodi Bohra community of New York volunteered at the recent Community Gardening Day at King Manor Museum in Queens.
King Manor is an historic house museum located in Jamaica, Queens, not far from the Dawoodi Bohra masjid, or mosque, that is currently completing construction. The museum is dedicated to preserving the legacy of Rufus King, an American Founding Father, one of the first senators of New York State, and an outspoken critic of slavery.
“Our ethnobotanical garden was conceived as a way to activate the historical roots of the land by interpreting the agricultural history of the King family, and serve as a living archive exploring the ancestral foodways of the Lenape, enslaved and freed Africans, and early European settlers of New York City,” explained Brittany Lester, Director of Education at King Manor Museum.
Volunteers helped prepare the King Manor Museum garden for spring with a thorough clean up and weeding, in preparation for a local school gardening event.
“This year, kindergarten to fifth grade students from Growing Up Green Charter School in Jamaica are making the garden a part of their classrooms by planting, observing, and caring for the garden beds. King Manor is very grateful to the members of the Dawoodi Bohra community, including families and youth, who helped prepare the garden for these students and set them up for success. It was an amazing day of community collaboration, a bit of rain, and a lot of fun,” said Ms. Lester.
The community’s participation in the gardening event was part of Project Rise, a global initiative by the Dawoodi Bohras to improve access to education, health care, and nutrition, while protecting the environment.