Pittsburgh Group Backyard hosts volunteer occasions to heal the neighborhood after taking pictures the tree of life – CBS Pittsburgh

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Sheridan Avenue Orchard and Garden is growing vigorously on empty East Liberty lot, brimming with things like fresh tomatoes and peppers from its 18 garden beds, and has offered free produce to the community for nearly a decade.

“We now have up to 20 fruit trees. We started 2012 with just a few, ”said Annie Dunn, senior program associate of Repair the World Pittsburgh, the Jewish organization that manages the garden.

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Thanks to the group’s volunteer work, they gave away more than £ 500 of fruit in 2021.

“The aim is for passers-by to know that they can come in, pick fresh products, eat them immediately or take them home with them. Anything that isn’t collected, we harvest and put in the pantry, ”said Julie Mallis, Executive Director of Repair the World Pittsburgh.

(Photo credit: KDKA)

But from the same soil those who tend the garden sow the seeds of hope.

After the tragedy of the Tree of Life three years ago, the group began using the community garden for annual volunteer events to help those affected by the tragedy heal from trauma.

“When I mourn or my friends are mourning, we’ve found that doing something about yourself makes real sense,” said Maxwell Reiver, a Repair the World Pittsburgh Fellow

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The Garden Volunteer Days continued this year as the world celebrates three years since the tragedy.

This was one of 20 memorial service activities organized by RTWP. And new this year, every event stands for a specific concern that is close to the hearts of the victims.

“We wanted it to be clearer and to honor them more consciously and in a more targeted manner and that people really learn more about the lives of the people we have lost,” Mallis told KDKA.

Rooted in the rich values ​​of Judaism, the volunteers not only remember the lives of the victims at every service, but also feel enriched.

“For so many people, service is such an important part of Judaism. That’s how we got our name for Repair the World, ”said Mallis.

Reiver told KDKA that the name “Repair the world” is translated from the Hebrew words “Tikkun Olam”.

“It’s all you can do to make this world better than we found it,” Reiver said. “Volunteering has been one of the most transforming experiences of my life. For me it is a really great opportunity to come together to honor really great people and to do so in a positive way that is really beneficial to the community and to the self. “

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Sheridan Avenue Orchard and Garden always needs volunteers to help and keep their mission going. If you want to get involved, you can contact the group here.

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