Ninth grade students learned about filming, interviewing, and storytelling recently when videographer Mindy Keeley visited Warren County High School. Mindy helped to film students telling their story of the garden. The video will go up on our indiegogo campaign website (http://igg.me/p/291471/x/1867718) to raise funds and awareness for the garden. Check out the campaign and the video below to get inspired by these awesome young men and women!
On January 21st, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day and a National Day of Service, fifty community members gathered at Warren County High School’s garden to celebrate the holiday through volunteerism. The day’s goal was to beautify and build structures for the garden, as well as to allow students to show the community their hard work.
Students, their families, and teachers from Warren County High School, Early College, New Tech, and Northside all worked together alongside community members to refurbish and beautify the garden. At the end of the workday, volunteers had built a hand washing station and several new raised beds in the garden, created colorful garden art projects, planted vegetable seeds for the greenhouse, and helped with general clean-up tasks like weeding and raking.
Now the garden is ready for students to plant, grow, and eat various fruits and vegetables. The produce is used for nutrition education in their classes. Several students new to the garden are now encouraged to continue volunteering with the project and to learn more about gardening.
The event was coordinated by Caroline Stover, Warren County’s FoodCorps Service Member. “The event served as an opportunity for our community to come together to volunteer in the garden and see what teachers and students have been working on,” she said. “Students here want to show the community how they have learned to grow their own food and prepare it in healthy ways.”
After four hours of work, volunteers enjoyed a fresh meal prepared by volunteer Michael Ring. Ring added arugula and kale straight from the garden to his chicken salad sandwiches to feed the volunteers. “I like the idea of eating traditional southern foods and combining that with whatever is fresh right out of the garden, because vegetables are crisper, more flavorful, and more nutritious that way.”
Coffee, cider, and delicious muffins were donated by FoodWorks Café in Warrenton for the volunteer breakfast. The rest of the meal was provided by donations from Main Street Produce in Littleton, Deborah Phillip, and Food Lion.
Warrenton's new cafe, FoodWorks, is focusing on providing our town fresh goods using local products. They have recently become a partner with the Warren County High School Garden by delivering their food scraps to our compost pile. All sustainable gardeners know compost made with food scraps and other organic materials are a proven way to add more nutrients back into your garden soil. Thank you FoodWorks for allowing us to learn composting techniques with our students and improve our school garden! Next stop on the compost train: the school cafeteria!
Friday, FoodCorps spoke to freshmen and sophomores at Warren New Tech High School about our program and the various ways to become involved. These students need 20 hours of service by the end of their sophomore year, and over 30 students signed up to volunteer with our county's school gardens and nutrition programming at elementary schools. Some volunteers are interested in gardening and cooking, while others are artists, photographers, and videographers who can add to the marketing and beautification of the gardens. FoodCorps is excited to work with these enthusiastic young adults!
This coming spring, these students will have a chance to volunteer in their own garden, as their science teacher Ms. Hoback is artfully planning a full vegetable growing program for her classes! She has ordered a greenhouse that will be constructed next Saturday with student volunteers, and has all the materials to start various veggie plants. The students involved plan to sell the plants as a fundraiser and plant some in a garden bed on campus which will be built later this spring. Kudos to Ms. Hoback for her creativity in science education!
On January 21st, Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Birthday and a National Day of Service, community members and students will gather at the WCHS garden to volunteer. They will work to build and fill raised garden beds, start transplants for the spring, and contribute to various art projects to beautify the garden space. The volunteer day is meant to honor Dr. King, and to provide a space where the community can come together and volunteer. The day will end with a light lunch for all involved.
Caroline Stover is from Winston-Salem, NC, and is currently serving as Warren County's FoodCorps Service Member.