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Posted on February 26, 2016 at 8:28 AM by Allan Warren
The Veggie Co-op is a volunteer-run program managed by the Pierce Conservation District through its program Harvest Pierce County that coordinates individuals to come together as a community to grow food on a farm scale on land provided by the Franklin Pierce School District in Tacoma, WA. Volunteers attend weekly work parties where they work, grow, and learn as a group, instead of stewarding rows individually as typical in most community gardens. While learning sustainable agriculture techniques, volunteers grow food for local food banks, school district cafeterias, and their families.
"Veggie Co-op has changed the way I interact with my food," said Hannah Miner, Veggie Co-op volunteer. "I've loved learning everything from seed to harvest-- including discovering my favorite task: broad-forking! I learn something new every week from HPC staff and other Veggie Co-op members, and I take what I learn back to my community garden plot/community."
Volunteers commit to an entire growing season (April-October) attending one 3 hour work party a week, with summer being the busiest time of year. In return for their dedication and commitment, participants can take home a weekly share of fresh produce throughout the harvest season. Work parties often begin with a short lecture on a gardening or farming topic, creating an opportunity for everyone to actively learn as they work on the farm.
Now entering its fourth season, the Veggie Co-op continues to grow and evolve with many new volunteer opportunities taking shape. 2016 promises to be an exciting year for the project!
Tag(s): Veggie Co-op, Urban Agriculture, Pierce Conservation District, growing food, Franklin Pierce School District, food banks