Community garden giving East Side community access to fresh food

Volunteers able to take home what they harvest

SAN ANTONIO – In the shadow of Downtown sits the Roots of Change Community Garden. It has served the East Side for almost 10 years, and it is located on the 1400 block of East Commerce.

"(We’re) trying to promote people to garden in their own spaces and take control of their own food systems and have less reliance on fluctuating markets of the food market," said Brian Gordon, food sovereignty coordinator of Roots of Change.

In recent months, the area has been known for an uptick in violent crimes. Gordon said it has been neglected by the city.

"This (area), being in a food dessert, which basically means that it's a lot harder for anybody in this area to access fresh fruit and vegetables if you do not have a car," Gordon said.

Finding fresh fruits and veggies isn't a problem at the garden, though.

"So right now, we’re going to be coming into the fall season. That’s going to be a lot of things like carrots, radishes, beets, roots, vegetables, things like that and also things like edible greens," Gordon said.

The nonprofit organization runs on donations and grants. They also need help from the community.

Volunteers are asked to help weed, mulch, water and maintain garden beds. They are also allowed to take home anything they help harvest.

The urban garden holds community work days every Thursday from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., and every first Saturday of the month from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.