If a tree can grow in Brooklyn, then why not a whole garden? One World Financial Group (WFG) associate, Ellen Golden, agrees with that sentiment, putting her gardening skills to good use as a volunteer for Brooklyn Community Services (BCS) to help grow a garden at a transitional living community in the New York borough.

“I've been wanting to do something to help my Brooklyn neighbors,” Ellen, who was introduced to the Brooklyn Community Services by WFG associate, Fradel Barber, told Gives Back. “[The BCS] impressed me so much that I got involved with a program that helps homeless women get off the streets and into safe housing.”

As part of the process, she, along with other volunteers, spread soil and mulch around all the plants, and helped mulch and weed an area now filled with irises, daisies, roses, honeysuckle and a few small trees. It also includes vegetables and herbs such as tomatoes, carrots and peppermint. The garden gives the women and children living in the community a lovely green space, that includes a gazebo and picnic tables, to enjoy.

The garden is located at a converted Brooklyn school that offers temporary housing to 20-30 homeless women and children looking to reintegrate into the community. One of the purposes of the garden, according to Ellen, is to teach the community members how they can grow and harvest the vegetables for consumption.

Volunteering with the BCS to plant this garden gave Ellen a chance to show off her green thumb. “It is great, especially since I live in a typical New York City apartment with nowhere to dig or plant or prune. This fed my soul.”

If you are interested in learning more about the Brooklyn Community services, please visit their website at www.wearebcs.org. To learn more about World Financial Group, please visit www.worldfinancialgroup.com.

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