This week Paige, one of our former Farm Club students who has also been in cooking class for a couple years, intervened when younger students went to put food scraps in the trash, and enthusiastically told everyone how we compost and how the worms at the farm would appreciate our food scraps more than a landfill would.
Each week in cooking class we make a kale salad, alongside our new recipe, and students have come to love the process of preparing it. Those who are assigned this role take pride in making a huge salad for their classmates, and often share the extra with younger students and the rec center directors. They are able to identify which flavors they think make the salad delicious, and have over time incorporated more nutritious components.
Students who have are not yet old enough to participate in cooking class at the rec center always ask when they will be able to learn to cook, and always ask for leftovers from the healthy meal we have prepared.
When the farm's mobile market visits the elementary school, students who have been involved with the Farm Club eagerly volunteer to help run the stand. They work together to identify what is for sale, and to encourage parents and teachers to buy produce from the market. Students are able to tell customers about their experience visiting the farm, and in some cases have been the ones to help plant the vegetables they are selling.
In 2017, our gardening 101 workshop introduced about 50 attendees to a variety of sustainable gardening practices and resources to support their growing endeavors. Using topics covered in this workshop, the farm put together a well-rounded curriculum and piloted a volunteer workshare program, in which participants received intensive training in sustainable farming practices and received vouchers to the weekly farm stand in exchange for their participation