Trinity County Juvenile Hall Garden Project
Lack of funding unfortunately put a halt to the garden project at the Trinity County Juvenile Hall, however with the receipt of the Sow It Forward grant it is on it’s way to restoration! The grant is funding the construction of a garden in a fully gated area of the facility that will allow both sentenced and not sentenced youth to participate.
The purpose of the garden project is to teach the youth self-sufficiency, vocation and life skills while creating an environment for healthy social interaction, team building, and responsibility. Furthermore, youth can develop a sense of pride in their accomplishments through enjoying the fruits (and vegetables!) of their labor.
With the grant money, we were able to purchase boards for raised beds, top soil, starter plants, tools, and gloves. In addition, as word spread about the project, the juvenile hall received donations of manure, extra boards, and more starter plants from different businesses in the community.
Starting in May, the youth constructed six 14’ x 4’ raised garden beds and filled them with a mixture of manure, sand, and soil. Within the last week, they have planted a variety of fruits and vegetables including corn, bell peppers, cucumbers, snap beans, and watermelons. All youth in the facility played a part in building this garden and take turns each week watering the beds. Juvenile Hall staff and teachers continue to mentor the youth, step-by-step on the process of growing their own food. So far, we are off to a great start!
All the food produced in our garden will be donated to different communal organizations, such as the local food bank and churches, which provide meals for those in need.
Staff and youth are excited to see what our garden will yield! With so many helping hands, we predict success. We thank Sow It Forward and Kitchen Gardeners International for providing our facility with this bountiful opportunity. The return of the garden project to the Trinity County Juvenile Hall has created an excellent learning program that we anticipate will play a part in reducing our probability of recidivism.
KGI is a nonprofit community of over 30,000 people who are growing some of our own food and helping others to do the same.
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