Ahimsa House Community Garden
After a long search for a large space with a neighboring vacant lot in Cedar Park, she bought 5007 Cedar in order to open a center for nonviolence. Her vision was to use the vacant 5005 property as a community garden. The neighbors told Margaret that she would be responsible for the upkeep of 5005, and she quickly turned the vacant land into a garden. The garden feeds many neighbors, runs educational programs for at-risk youth, herbalism workshops, and provides a green space for people to take time out and connect with mother earth.
Margaret and the community have invested thousands of dollars into improving the soil, planting perennials and annual crops, and offering thousands of hours of sweat equity.
5007 and 5005 Cedar Avenue, now known as Ahimsa House, have been serving the community as a space to share practices of peace since 2012. Each day there are two to three free yoga, dance, music and meditation classes. The garden is a big part of its mission, and it benefits many people by providing human-nature connection and fresh, organic food!
In 2012, Margaret followed Councilwoman Blackwell's advice to enter the lot into sheriff's sale. She put a downpayment of $800 on the property, and was given first bid as the adjacent homeowner and caretaker of the property. Unfortunately, a developer bought the property out from under her during the sheriff's sale and wouldn't consider Margaret's offers to purchase the property. He then sold the property at $62,000.
After recognizing the importance of the garden to the community and a week-long Change.org campaign, the developer was willing to sell the property for $80,000 if the sale was completed in March 2015. Margaret purchased the property with a bank loan co-signed by her father. She needs to repay this loan within the year as her father is unable to serve as a co-signer past MARCH 2016.
This property is worth more than money. This property is a piece of community development, the type of development that MLK, Gandhi and other nonviolent revolutionaries encouraged.
Please honor our work, the earth and the struggle to rise above economic violence. Save the Ahimsa House garden!
WE ARE HOPING TO PAY OFF THE GARDEN SO THAT IT CAN BECOME A LAND TRUST. While our ultimate goal is $80,000, the beneficiaries and those who know and use our garden are not wealthy, and we do understand that many people can only contribute $10-$25. But if 800 people donate $10, what a difference that will make!
Please don't stop at money, either! This is a community garden, and we love others to come support the garden, work the land, share seeds, wisdom, and stories. COME ENJOY THE SPACE WITH US.
With much gratitude,
Margaret Ferrigno & the Ahimsa House Philly Crew
We had an amazing first season as garden "owners"- thanks to your support! We became a City Harvest site this years and The Philadelphia Horticultural Society gave us lumber for raised beds and beautiful starts, seeds & a TON (literally) of black GOLD- 60/40 compost/soil mix! Our plants are loving it!
Please consider making a year end contribution to the garden. We are trying to pay the loan off this year so that we can make the space a land trust! Through all sorts of fundraising campaigns and generous neighbors, we have raised $39,343.06 already! The property & it's closing costs totaled $83,445.45, So we have only $44,102.39 left to raise! We are almost half way there thanks to all of you!
May you enjoy the bountiful blessings of this precious Earth in this New Year!
Featuring Unidos da Filadelfia!
DJ BeeTeeBeats, and more amazing bands to be announced soon. Bake sale, tarot readings, give-aways and more! All love and proceeds go straight to the Ahimsa House community garden.