My story starts with my friend Neha Kumar, about her potted Aloe Vera cactus in her dorm.
She shared how this plant makes her room feel more ‘homely’ and is a constant reminder of her mom. Neha’s mom has plants all around her house and she treats them like her little babies. She would walk around the house watering them and talking to them. Her dad is also a fan of gardening and thus for Neha and her family, gardening is a family ritual that helps strengthen their bond. Her parents were both born and raised in India and back home they both had gardens that they maintained.
Her family also tries to play a part in environmental sustainability, and so instead of using planters, they use old recycling bins to plant all their garden veggies. Having been born and raised in India myself, I connected with Neha through our shared culture and memories of “home.”
The Butterfly postcard campaign was developed by the UIC Latino Cultural Center in collaboration with student organizations Fearless Undocumented Alliance and Heritage Garden Student Group that highlights the parallels between the migration of people and Monarch butterflies across national borders.
You can also pick up a postcard at the UIC Latino Cultural Center and mail it to someone that can help improve the lives of immigrants.