Gardening tools stolen from group that helps refugees - KCTV5

Gardening tools stolen from group that helps refugees

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Refugee farmers in Kansas City are able to grow food to feed their families and adjust to their new lives. Thieves stole gardening tools from the Global Gardens Project, affecting the opening of the group's fourth location. (KCTV5) Refugee farmers in Kansas City are able to grow food to feed their families and adjust to their new lives. Thieves stole gardening tools from the Global Gardens Project, affecting the opening of the group's fourth location. (KCTV5)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

A charitable group is suffering after thieves stole about $1,000 worth of gardening tools.

The charitable group, Global Gardens Project, helps refugees in Kansas City. There are three gardens where refugees can grow plants from their home countries to feed their families and build a community.

A fourth garden was ready to open but has been put on hold due to some of their property being stolen.

A garden at 6th and Monroe is farmed by eight families. These families come from Nepal and Bhutan and grow many native foods.

“They grow a lot of greens and a lot of the red long bean,” said Molly Fusselman with Global Gardens Project.

The three gardens are on city land bank properties that were blighted before this.

Most of the farmers are women and elderly family members.

“When they come to America, they can feel isolated and so this brings a sense of community,” Fusselman said.

The Global Gardens Project is a new program by the Jewish Vocational Services that is funded by charitable grants.

“They are not able to join the workforce and this allows them to still feel like they are contributing to their family,” said Hilary Cohen Singer with Jewish Vocational Services.

The fourth garden was set to open at 7th and Benton for two farmers from Burma and Iran, until someone pulled up a truck and took off with everything. The garden was a donation.

An entire storage box of tools, which was chained closed like the ones at the other sites, and two costly 300-gallon water jugs, also known as IBC totes, were taken.

“The totes had 300 gallons of water, so that’s incredibly heavy,” Fusselman said.

It’s disappointing for the group because a grant-based budget isn’t flexible and the two preparing the lot were looking forward to it.

“They’re missing home. They’re struggling to adapt and so to take away that thing that is comfortable and familiar to them is very sad,” Singer said.

The group is looking for donations of old tools or jugs. If you want to contribute to the cause, you can contact Fusselman at mfusselman@jvskc.org or go to their website, http://www.jvskc.org.

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