MQVN Community Development Corporation, Inc. (MQVN CDC) was established by community leaders in May 2006 to assist Vietnamese-Americans in New Orleans East in rebuilding their lives and their community after hurricane Katrina.
In the immediate aftermath of hurricane Katrina, MQVN CDC played a leading role in providing emergency relief assistance as well as in organizing Vietnamese-American residents to play an active role in the rebuilding of the community surrounding New Orleans East area.
MQVN CDC's mission is to preserve and promote our unique diversity and to improve the quality of life of residents in the Greater New Orleans area, beginning in New Orleans East.
The Tulane City Center worked with Mary Queen of Vietnam Community Development Corporation (MQVNCDC) to develop a strategy for the implementation of a 28-acre urban farm and farmers market in the Village de L’Est neighborhood. TCC’s partners in the projects were the LSU School of Landscape Architecture and the University of Montana’s Environmental Studies program.
The Vietnamese-American community in New Orleans East has maintained an extensive network of community gardens since their migration to the area from Vietnam in the 1970’s. These gardens produced food that was not readily available in the area at the time and was used by the growers to feed their families. Surpluses were sold at an informal Saturday morning market. These gardens were destroyed by the floodwaters of Hurricane Katrina, and the proposal TCC produced envisioned re-establishing these practices in a more formalized and developed setting.
In the initial proposal, the farm is designed to be sustainable both culturally and environmentally. Agricultural production is organic, energy is used efficiently, water is managed on site, and waste is recycled. The market is envisioned as a place that serves the local community and draws people from other neighborhoods of New Orleans and visitors from other cities.
Check out the project in the New Wave here.
Tulane City Center
Dan Etheridge, advising professor
Art Terry, TCC intern
LSU School of Landscape Architecture
Mary Queen of Vietnam Community Development Corporation
Father Vien Nguyen
University of Montana