Joy Gary

“…we are advocating for food security.”

 

Interviewee: Joy Gary

Interviewers: Jenny P., Grade 12

Interview Date: January 21, 2015

Interview Location: ReVision Urban Farm, Boston, MA

 Student Reflection:

Joy started working at ReVision Urban Farm in August of 2013. Having grown up on a farm, working with the earth was embedded in her mind from a young age. She always knew she wanted to grow her own food in any way possible, and developed a strong interest in urban agriculture, new foods, and culinary skills along the way. Before joining ReVision, Joy worked on a farm in Michigan and quickly moved to the Boston area when the opportunity to work on an urban farm become available.

In the winter, ReVision will do workshops in the morning or evening and plant seedlings for their seedling sales and harvest, while in the spring, they mainly work in the greenhouse planting. After late spring, when the seedlings have produced a growing harvest, they work at farmers market around Dorchester and Mattapan selling goods. Joy attributes her lifestyle to her parents, who offer her great inspiration. “It’s in my blood you could say.” It is through her work at ReVision, growing food for others, that Joy is able to use her passion for agriculture in a positive way.

“Our mission is creating a sustainable healthy lifestyle for the residents in house first and then spreading out to the wider community.”

“We have added one whole half acre of property which helped us increase our reach and have greater access.”

“We constantly work with volunteers from March to October.”

“What I enjoy a lot is being able to introduce new foods to people at the farmers market where you get to interface a customer and they either may not know about a vegetable or wouldn’t normally buy it unless we tell them exactly how to cook it in a way that can be healthy but really good. I like to see when people’s faces light up when you tell them a new idea how to prepare a vegetable.”

“Kids do love vegetables and I think there is this wide misconception that children don’t like vegetables but it depends on how it’s introduce it to them.”

“With farming there is always challenges and I think since we are partnering with nature, which can be fickle, and even more fickle now that we’re having climate change. I think that you may have planned on having a crop and the crop just does not do well, and I think that is one consistent challenge.”

“The biggest achievement is the relationships that we develop with the residents in the house and whatever impact it has on them. And how much we deposit what we do into the revision community and how it changes their life and how they decide to choose vegetables in the future.”

“Its important to have projects like these to provide food for the cities.”

“Revision has taught me that I’m a lot stronger than I thought I could be. It has helped me to think of strategies for solutions in the moment and to be quick and reasonable about it and to not be hard on myself when things don’t go as planned.”

“Everyone is an expert in their own life, you can give people tips and tools but anyone you can meet you can learn something from, regardless of where they are coming from.”

“To grow food for yourself and to teach others to grow food for themselves – we are passionate about.”

“Activism is like advocating for basic human rights that you are passionate about and we are advocating for food security.”