Community rallies to help to make refugee garden more secure after vandalism

Posted at 1:10 PM, Sep 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-07 15:43:49-04

BOISE, Idaho — Thieves helped themselves to ripe vegetables from a refugee garden behind the Hillview United Methodist Church in Boise twice in recent weeks, prompting a community effort to help secure the space.

Volunteers spent Saturday working to ensure that doesn't happen again, by building a fence and planning to install cameras for extra security around the garden.

"The worst thing that came out of this was not just the loss of vegetables," said Hillview United Methodist Pastor Brenda Sene, "but also the loss of security."

16-year-old Christopher Peterson heard the story during a sermon and was motivated to help by collecting donations.

The community showed their support by donating $4,500, garden tools and labor to build a fence, paint a shed and put up some new signs.

"It's really reassuring to hear thank you from somebody that I never would have gotten to know," said Peterson. "Maybe I can get to know them because of this, an outside perspective is really nice."

The Boise Bicycle Project's mobile repair unit was also on site Saturday to fix up bikes. Boy Scouts offered to finish up the fence once the concrete settles in the base of the fence posts and the church will also hold a rummage sale next Saturday.