My Green story. Once upon a time back in 2008 I was interviewed by a local Newspaper that documented my Urban Farming work both in an article and photos : The Sun -Sentinel sent a columnist and a professional photographer to do the reporting. Check it out:
Back then ,from 2001 till 2008 , I was lucky to have my half an acre community garden alive above the ground and breathing life into my livelihood .I was making a living and supporting myself.. Back then,I was among the first to start a local semi-CSA -like start up horticultural community venture in S.Florida ,after I lost my 9 year job .My employer decided to shut down the business and move overseas with a consequence loss of more than 3000 local jobs!I decided to create a GREEN JOB.YES..I can do it.. When there is a will there is a way! It happened. Even with:. No funds , no support, no land ..No nothing , except a SKILL , a PASSION , and a strong determination to succeed.. In 2009 that garden was erased and turned into a landfill .All the work to build a fertile soil and a community garden that was transforming a crime infested lot into a haven of organic produce, part of its crop donated to a local soup kitchen ,was cancelled from the face of the earth for ever. When I asked why? I was told I do not exist!!!From one community garden failure I took a lesson and an inspiration to move and contribute in starting more than 8 community gardens .Some of them are pulsating and growing. From that moment on I gained knowledge and experience ,based upon which I developed a GREEN job :Growing and teaching Tropical Organic Gardening Classes in S.Florida.
Ironically speaking, I was invited once to participate in a Green ENERGY Conference at the Palm Beach Convention Center earlier this year. Lo and behold there I saw the parks and recreation official which initiated the demise of the community garden talking GREEN.I remembered asking then for help :FREE mulch that the was produced from the Hurricane debris of destroyed VEGETATIONS .Instead of donating the mulch to the community garden ,to help build a fertile soil, guess what? Mulch was dumped at a nearby cemetery instead. There are a lot of GREEN wash talk going on.. Too many chiefs but not so many Indians as the say goes. In reality what we need are REAL URBAN FARMERS PEIOPLE who WENT through the LOCAL EXPERIENCE and EDUCATION of FARMING in S.Florida.What we encounter is outsourcing a VIRTUAL job seekers to fill in the popular GREEN vacancies. That is why we fail in the Actual GREEN Reality field when we play politics !!! The dead had more priority than the living for the mulch!!! What hurts is more than that .. As (some) cities in S.Florida rush to pass ordinances and regulations to control and discourage growing food in our backyards and community gardens by introducing strict regulations ,permits and fees etc , while at the same time the mainstream media and local officials say to the contrary in the GREEN WASH PROPAGANDA . This is why those of us who toil the soil and spend their lives promoting a GREEN REALITY -do not exist on the paper grounds- revert to blogs and word of mouth to tell their stories. THANKS TO SUPPORT FROM BENEVOLENT SPIRITS LIKE YOU the march to create more REAL GREEN JOBS like Urban Farmers goes and lives on . WHAT IS YOUR GREEN STORY? There is power in knowledge. But the super power is transforming knowledge into ACTS. When the First Lady established the First Organic Garden in modern times at the White House.I knew that there are hopes for Urban Farmers to make a living growing food . When I knew that there were more than a couple of US presidents(Mention Jefferson and Washington) whose title before being elected for PRESIDENTS ,was FARMER. Then I decided to carry on working on my passion and vision of creating a LOCAL green job that is SUSTAINABLE for keeping urban /small family farmers above the poverty level . Thank you for attending or promoting my Organic Gardening classes. Together we can make a difference by teaching . producing, consuming,promoting and supporting LOCALLY GROWN ORGANIC PRODUCE. This coming new year make a new resolutuion : Go grow a PRODUCTIVE garden.
Have a GREEN HAPPY HOLLIDAY SEASON!
You Tube : Tony Dagher-Urban gardener.