This year we doubled the amount of fresh, organic produce distributed in our community. We hosted hundreds of students from local schools. clubs and organizations, and offered them meals, taste-testings, garden games, and leadership skills. Hundreds of garden-fresh meals were enjoyed by our youth leadership students and community members.
What challenges did or does your project face?
As our program quickly grows, we are challenged by the need to hire more staff to help manage volunteers and facilitate student programs. We also need to raise funds to bring more staff on board.
How are you working to overcome them?
We are actively seeking new staff, new volunteers, and new sources of funding. We are increasing our level of earned income from vegetable sales and gardening services in our community, as part of our Youth Leadership Program. We are seeking more local business sponsors and engaging new organizations in our community.
What did you or your project learn this season that might be useful to others as well?
We have been pleasantly met by an amazing amount of positive support from our community and beyond. We've learned that it never hurts to ask for what we need, and that so many people are inspired when they hear our story, hear our youth leaders tell their stories, and understand all the ways we are serving our community. This has given us the courage to continue to take risks and meet challenges head on, to help make our community a better place.