Raise the Barn: Project Highlight - AgroPlus Holdings Ltd
In the spring of 2021, the Foremost school started a community garden project to promote knowledge of food production, teamwork, and responsibility, in addition to providing a way to support the community with locally raised produce. With the help of community members donating land, equipment, compost, manure, seed, and most importantly, their time and knowledge, this project came to life.
The team at AgroPlus Holdings Ltd, Foremost location was inspired to enter this project into WinField United Canada’s Raise the Barn contest. “This was an opportunity to help children experience learning outside the classroom, understand where their food comes from, as well as equip them with the life skills to grow their own food” shared Tanner Stenstrud, Agronomist with AgroPlus Holdings Ltd. “We really believe in supporting local; we're local ourselves and this project is rallying the community to support a great local cause that was aligned with the four pillars (Mental Health, Hunger, Education and Community Spirit) in the Raise the Barn program.”
“From our perspective, this garden has a positive impact on the mental and physical health of people of all ages. There’s the fact that it's connected to the school, which promotes education on food production and it's a way to bring the community together; we have community members with strong gardening roots that are passing on their knowledge to younger demographics without that history of farming. We like that it supplies food for local people and can support students who may need fresh produce or meals. So, it felt like the perfect fit,” explained Stenstrud.
“The response to the garden has been very positive and we are looking forward to being able to expand with the help of Raise the Barn,” shared Jenny Seward, owner of Cronkhite Ag Consulting and Chair of Foremost School Council. The principal shared that students are constantly commenting on the enjoyment they get from working outside with their hands and how parents have mentioned their children eagerly discussing various parts of the garden project. Everything from harvesting beets, making salsa, planting carrots, and learning pest control have contributed to an increased engagement related to the school which provides a visible boost to their mental health.
“AgroPlus Holdings is proud to support a project that encompasses all ages and backgrounds of the community throughout the year. The current garden supports numerous families within the community and an expansion will only increase the support. We believe the garden project will continue to unite the community in multiple ways while encouraging hands-on learning in an exciting outdoor setting,” said Stenstrud.
As a regional winner of Raise the Barn, AgroPlus and the Foremost school community garden project received $8,000. You can help them win an additional $20,000 towards their project by voting daily on the Raise the Barn website. Vote now!
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