AICHO Holds Blessing of the Gardens Ceremony
DULUTH, Minn.– There was a ‘Blessing of the Gardens’ ceremony today held by the American Indian Community Housing Organization (AICHO), that honored and gave appreciation to the plants for what they give to us and the community around us.
Hope Flanagan of Seneca Nation, and of the Turtle Clan, is the Community Outreach and Cultural Teacher for Dream of Wild Health, which is a nonprofit Indigenous farm in Hugo, Minnesota.
She gave blessings and prayers and sang songs to honor the water and earth.
The head gardener at AICHO says this garden will have a positive impact on kids, “for the youth, we really hope that they can develop some skills in gardening, and learn more about cultural food practices and share that with others,” Katie Schmitz, the Children’s Program coordinator at AICHO, said.
Today’s ceremony kicked off the start to the ‘Together we Grow’ youth gardening program, which is a 16-month program for urban indigenous and BIPOC middle and high schoolers.
It serves to teach and build connections to the culture through food, art, and communication.