Growing eggplants, kale, radishes, beetroots and other wholesome vegetables in a plot of land just across from Houston’s unique Rothko Chapel is Roy Rogers. He’s a refugee who arrived four years ago from Gambia.
Hilary grows vegetables at home, so she got talking to Roy and learnt about the innovative Plant It Forward initiative that’s been launched across four city centre sites. It’s a simple idea to build on the subsistence farming experience that many refugees bring with them.
Thanks to land denoted by a local University (St Thomas) and free business and organic farming training, Roy and others now grow and sell vegetables to earn a living. Apparently, the locals are happy to pay a small premium for Roy’s vegetables at the market each Saturday.
Interestingly volunteers are also encouraged to support the refugees by giving up a few hours every week. If you want to know more, click here.
We were impressed; surely these sorts of initiatives have the potential to offer fulfilling lives and better integration with host communities.