How one family is turning vacant lots into green spaces in this once thriving CLE neighborhood

Posted at 7:34 AM, Apr 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-20 07:34:09-04

As spring weather approaches,  green spaces across the city become retreats, but not everyone has access to explore the outdoors. One Cleveland family is trying to change that one shovel, one bench and one garden at a time.

The Acy family is known for providing fruits and veggies to their Glenville neighbors through their Urban Garden called the Community Garden in the District, and now, they're back at it again, putting their green thumbs to work— in a different way.

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“We felt like this is something that the community needs,” said Erika Acy, Co-Founder of the Garden.

Her and her husband’s next project—green spaces. They plan to transform three vacant lots in the neighborhood, into parks, filled with benches, tables, grills and more for kids and families to play in, trying to bring back a sense of community that used to exist years ago.

“Those spaces have died, so it’s time to you know to bring the parks back and make them safe,” Acy said.

Her husband, Stephen Acy said it’s all about bringing people together and fulfilling a need.

“If you can do something to better the community in which you reside in, you know, why not?” he said.

So they’re calling on the community for help, holding a fundraiser selling fresh homemade lunches on Saturday, April 21 between 1-4 p.m. at their community garden at 9811 South Blvd. Cleveland, OH 44108. All the money raised will go toward building the green spaces.

They’re trying to raise $7,000 by May 8th and once the money is raised, they’re hoping members of the community will help build the park with them.

“So they can put some skin in the game and have some value in that and want to keep it up,” Acy said.

If you’d like to donate you can visit the fundraiser here.