Syracuse students sow seeds of change with community garden

Local News

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — The garden at STEAM at Dr. King Elementary School in Syracuse is in full bloom.

“We have had tomatoes, we’ve been doing collards we’ve been doing lettuce, all kinds of herbs and this year we added plants,” said Administrative Intern Priscilla Newby.

During the school year, students got their hands dirty learning about what it takes to have a garden and grow their own food.

“It’s interesting and it’s fun and it’s fun to learn all these things and planting all of these vegetables,” said Rebecca, who’s in the fourth grade.

“Participating in the garden is like really fun,” said fifth grade student Adaya, “It gives me free fruit and vegetables and it keeps me really healthy and and strong.”

The school has had the garden for years, but it addresses an ongoing need in the community right now – the lack of access to fresh produce and healthy food.

“When we look at the corner stores, there’s not a corner store that has fresh vegetables or fruit, so this is an example again for our kids in the community to give them the opportunity to see it grow,” said Superintendent Jaime Alicea.

The students and their families not only benefit from this urban garden but the surrounding community as well as the food bank have access to the vegetables.

“It’s really important for kids to learn how to be self-sufficient and learn now, we can do all these stages, we can make what we have into something that produces not just for ourselves but for others,” said art teacher Andrea Buckvold.

The vegetables and fruits of their labor have a lasting impact.

The school plans to continue this garden with students in the summer program.

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