When I started GrowOya, the vision was clear. Make food more accessible. While working as a chef, I saw firsthand the power of food and what feeding people meant. It's the shared belief that everyone should have access to being able to grow their own food, providing a chance to cultivate a more equitable future for themselves and their communities. The question of how could everyone have a seat at the table and what could I do to help? started to transpire. From that moment on, gardening was the catalyst for my involvement.
While in L.A. I came across Growing Hope Gardens (www.growinghopegardens.org).They create and support onsite, organic, regenerative and food gardens with residents of affordable housing and homeless shelters. I was so inspired by the work they were doing that I reached out to Carolyn Day, the founder. After meeting with Carolyn, I was blown away. What a force for good! She’s a stunt woman and surfer, and the most humble and kind person I’ve ever met.
Growing Hope Gardens has been planting change and transforming lives through food and gardens in L.A. since 2019, and their mission is so beautiful.
To empower people of modest means and those experiencing homelessness by supporting resident urban food gardens on affordable housing, homeless shelter properties & raw land.
Recently my daughters and I were lucky enough to be a part of their 15th garden install. It was amazing to have my girls alongside me while we were installing these beds for women at this L.A. site. We talked about what the gardens would be able to produce and how it is empowering them to grow their own healthy, delicious and seasonal food. Carolyn has a real vision for Growing Hope Gardens, and we look forward to continuing to support them and their inspiring work.