the German-American Heritage Center and Museum partners with the Davenport-based nonprofit Tapestry trusses on a new exhibit, “Our Neighbours, Our Friends: Unsere Nachbarn, Unsere Freunde,” which opens at GAHC on Sunday, February 27 at 712 W. 2n/a St., Davenport.
It explores how this five-year-old organization helps new community members from around the world right here in West Davenport.
When GAHC first heard about its close neighbor Tapestry Farms, they knew there were some interesting connections to explore, according to a statement from the center. “Tapestry Farms is doing great work in the community that was once home to many German immigrants generations ago,” he says. “Today, our neighborhood is home to immigrants and refugees from around the world.”
German immigrants of the 1800s brought their music and culture to Iowa, but their farming skills allowed them to support their families and grow our community, according to GAHC. “The same can be said for immigrants and refugees working with Tapestry Farms who have found a home in Quebec today. »
“Tapestry Farms helps new families in our area grow not only food, but also relationships, community, and lasting means of support,” the statement read. “We hope this exhibit can help shine a light on the good work of our neighbors and friends, Tapestry Farms, and help visitors connect the stories and experiences of their ancestors and loved ones with those of our new friends.
An exciting part of Tapestry Farms’ work is providing land for refugee populations to do what they do best: grow and grow food for their families and our community, according to GAHC.
Many German immigrants in Davenport and throughout the Midwest did the exact same thing when they built their new home. In fact, it was often a major factor in their choice of destination. “But now land is expensive and Davenport is much more urban than when our German immigrant ancestors arrived,” the statement said.
Tapestry Farms uses urban properties to create garden space in the city. This not only provides food in the “food deserts” and a source of income for new members of our community, but also the opportunity to find healing, hope, familiarity and renewed purpose in their new home. .
“We see many physical and ideological ties in this venture to the German immigrant population,” the statement said, noting that their first garden is located at 3rd and Brown streets, just one block northwest of GAHC.
Through Tapestry Farms, refugees are employed to put their farming experience, skills and talents to work for their new community and families.
Products are distributed through an income-based Community Supported Agriculture model – people with limited incomes pay little or nothing for the stock, while people with higher incomes pay more to support the work of Tapestry Farms .
Beyond agricultural efforts, Tapestry Farms invests generously in the lives of refugees resettling in Quebec and “constantly works to remove barriers faced by refugees in housing, education, medical care and mental health, work, food, transportation, community and citizenship,” says GAHC.
This exhibit aims to highlight the many connections between the current immigrant and refugee experience in the community and the past German immigrant population that we are so familiar with.
“What a joy it has been to partner with the German American Heritage Center,” Ann McGlynn, executive director of Tapestry Farms, said this week. “Their care, curiosity, patience and creativity in building this exhibit showed us the best that can be in a partnership between two organizations.
“We are grateful to be able to share some of the stories of the people of Tapestry Farms, in this case refugees from East and Central Africa,” she said. “We look forward to people coming to explore the skills, talents and hopes that newcomers bring to the Quad Cities.”
The new exhibition consists of first-hand accounts of migration, story/text panels, images, objects temporarily loaned by refugees and media components: video interviews, news, etc.
The exhibit is housed in the first floor gallery of GAHC, with numerous associated workshops and programs to accompany this engaging exhibit topic. The center will host a vernissage of the exhibition on Sunday March 6 at 4:30 p.m.