|Left to right: Ipsita Salim, Safiya Taoufix, and Hauwa Santuraki in the site of the future Green Eden Community Garden.|
They have a loftier goal than just growing some vegetables, though. “We want to provide a space for people of different backgrounds to come together through common love for nature and gardening,” says Ipsita Salim, a student at Northern Virginia Community College. “It will also serve as a catalyst to spark interest in the growing of green, organic crops. Our hope is that the proceeds will go toward supporting the less fortunate by means of the Dar al-Hijrah Food Bank.”
Dar Al-Hijrah has given the project a green light. The public is invited to an informational meeting on the proposed garden Sunday, April 27, 2:30 p.m., in the lecture hall at the mosque, 3159 Row St.
Salim and the other youths working on the project—JEB Stuart High School students Safiya Taoufik, Assia Khadri, and Hauwa Santuraki—are seeking volunteers and corporate sponsors and have reached out to Home Depot, local schools, nearby churches, the Green Muslims environmental group, and other organizations.
“This garden would be a good platform to interact with each other,” says Taoufik. The group would like to see local residents working in the garden along with mosque members, with the goal of strengthening relationships among the community and among the generations.