LOWER EAST SIDE, Manhattan (PIX11) – A new community food garden on the Lower East Side in Manhattan is ready for harvest. It’s a green space that will help feed underserved families and cultivate job skills.

What used to be an old playground is now a beautiful new green space. Timothy Davis, 21, lives in the neighborhood and says it is beautiful and serves an important purpose.  

“It is replenishing to be able to be surrounded by people who want to see you grow as much as you want to grow yourself,” said Davis.

The community garden is on Henry and Montgomery streets. Kale, lettuce and carrots are planted and ready for harvest. Davis grew up in the neighborhood and said he understands the struggle to afford to live in the area and now feels part of a solution.

Davis is part of a team of hunger helpers called the Henry Street Community Response Team. It has more than a hundred members, ranging from 18 to 24 years old. Carlos Montanez leads the young team and said it was formed in response to a hunger and health crisis during the pandemic, and it also helps provide much-needed jobs for youth in his neighborhood. 

The garden is a collaboration of the Henry Street Settlement, Lower East Side Ecology Center and urban gardener Samuel Pressman. The garden will serve as an outdoor classroom with classes in composting, gardening, carpentry and cooking for all ages.

All the food grown in the garden will be used in the community and help feed families hit hard by job loss and inflation during the COVID-19 pandemic.

If you want to volunteer or support, find more information at the Henry Street Settlement website.