From planting seeds to point of sale, the students at Hope School have a brand-new program to learn all about their food and where it comes from. The Farm Project is the dream of Shawn Ricci and John Vincent of Youth Effort Farms, who recently installed 30 Tower Gardens in the school’s courtyard that are tended to entirely by the school community and will yield 44 heads of produce each.
“When you eat these greens, it’s like you’re eating the sun,” said Principal Barbara LaCorte during the school’s first harvest and farmers’ market last Friday. “We even have solar panels powering the towers.”
Parents and the public can become farm members and commit to four bundles of fresh greens per week, which also provides a sustainable income flow for the school. The produce is also incorporated into school lunches, and soon all schools in the Hope Elementary School District will have Water Tower Garden projects of their own.