December 6, 2021
Rio de Janeiro (Reuters) – The Manguinhos district of Rio de Janeiro is a slum that was once cracked by addicts and dumped by residents, and is now a community vegetable garden that feeds about 800 families suffering from raging food inflation. It changed to.
According to Rio de Janeiro’s “Hortas Cariocas” program coordinator, the Urban Garden covers four football fields and is one of the largest gardens in Latin America.
“This particular area was used as’Clacolandia’,” said Julio Cesar Barros, an agronomist employed by the city. “If you arrive here at 10 am on Wednesday, you can find a few thousand smokers smoking cracks in the area.”
Barros said he helped create the “Hortas Cariocas” project in 2006, planting vegetables in different parts of the city and supplying low-income residents with organic products. He also said that urban gardens helped prevent the irregular occupation of dangerous areas prone to floods and landslides.
“While I’m planting [seeds] I expect to harvest it within a few days and take it home to eat, “said Diane Silva, an urban farm worker. “I know I’m planting to harvest tomorrow … it’s a great pleasure to work in the garden, it’s a job we enjoy, I love this.”
According to Barros, the project is currently expanding to 49 vegetable fields throughout Rio.
Esekiel Diaz, a Manginhos resident who helps coordinate the project, said the initiative has transformed his community.
“It changed the face of Manginhos … our community needs exactly this: peace, happiness, and a better life.”
(This story has been modified to remove irrelevant words from the byline and correct the spelling of the byline)
(Report by Sebastian Rocandio, Written by Ana Mano, Edited by Diane Craft)
Rio’s Urban Gardens feed hundreds of families in the former “Crackland”
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