In early 2013, Weld Food Bank established a community garden, called Victory Garden, in partnership with Alternative Homes for Youth (AHFY), a residential rehabilitative center for adolescent males with difficult pasts. The goal of this partnership is to share the benefits of the garden between Weld Food Bank and AHFY. Our goal at the Food Bank is to increase the access to farm-fresh produce for our clients. That means increasing the percentage of produce from the garden that we use in prepared meal programs like Kid’s Café and Summer Feeding and making sure that there is always produce available in our “extras” room for clients of our Commodity Supplemental Food Program and Emergency Food Box Program. Along with increasing direct access to fresh, healthy food for those who need it the most, we also wish to increase awareness of the benefits of farm-fresh food and community and home gardening. At Alternative homes for Youth, our goals are numerous. First the garden will supply the produce for a new farm-to-table menu, the meals for which the youth will learn how to prepare themselves from culinary professionals. It will also be part of a horticultural therapy program, currently under development which supplements the current treatment program at AHFY. The garden also is meant to serve as a safe and beautiful place that the youth have access to for learning, sharing and healing. Given these goals, the benefits of this garden will be widespread and are designed to ripple outwards through the community. This garden represents our wish to provide people experiencing food insecurity and at-risk youth with the strong foundations, the healthy food and practices that will facilitate their rise to self-sufficiency, food security and an overall increased well-being.
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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Kitchen Gardeners International
3 Powderhorn Drive,
Scarborough, ME, 04074, USA