Organic Waste + 10,000 Worms
Teaching kids in the South Bronx to love trash
Who would have thought that in the in the heart of the South Bronx on Webster Avenue, a community garden thrives, surrounded by garbage, red brick projects and concrete playgrounds. The garden is run by Stephen Ritz and the Green Bronx Machine. Ritz, a 30-year organic farmer and Bronx native, leads the urban agriculture initiative that helps middle school students in the community grow fruits and vegetables in fragmented and marginalized communities. Ritz conducts community composting in the Bronx.
The Green Bronx initiative was triggered by the food drought and high waste in the Southern Bronx. According to a recent report bodegas accounted for 77 percent of the South Bronx’s fruit and vegetable stores. According to the NYC solid waste management plan, New Yorkers discard over 13,000 tons of residential trash every day which is disposed of through 63 private waste transfer stations. These transfer stations are generally located in the South Bronx, which has a disproportionate share of these facilities.
— Ony Nwaohuocha