Lucia and Javier’s Story

Growing as a Family

Lucia and Javier

Global Gardens

Lucia and Javier and their two boys, Ismael and Carlos, take part in the Family Food Farm at Rosa Parks Elementary through Global Gardens, a United Way partner agency. And it has changed their lives.

“We eat fresh from the garden,” says Lucia. The family grows produce in their very own plot in the garden. They work with Global Gardens staff to plan the garden and participate in each step of the process. They also get to reap the benefits of all those fresh fruits and vegetables.

Lucia shares how her young son, Carlos, didn’t like vegetables before. “Now he grows them himself and feels proud,” she says.

But the benefits of Global Gardens for this family goes beyond just nutrition. “We go to Global Gardens instead of watching TV,” says Lucia. They find the garden a safe and welcoming place where they can be together as a family. Lucia even calls it her “sacred place.”

Lucia’s family has also found a community in their Family Food Garden. All the families get together in the garden regularly and share conversation and food from various cultures. Ismael, Lucia and Javier’s older son, has autism and is non-verbal, but he has also found a special place in the garden. Lucia says, “Ishmael is accepted and involved with other kids. We are all family in our Global Garden.”