Alex was 16 and a member of FOOD for Lane County’s Youth Farm Crew when we talked to her. Youth Farmers receive job skills and training in gardening, leadership, financial management and nutrition while growing food for FOOD for Lane County, a 65-member CSA program and two produce stands.
Many of the Youth Farmers know what it’s like to go home and not have food on the shelves. Many of them are dealing with adult issues at a very young age. Most of them have fewer opportunities, fewer advantages and less support than other kids their age. At the farm, they have the opportunity to give back and be part of the hunger solution, and they’re empowered by that opportunity.
“I love farming. I love watching the vegetables grow. You plant them and then three weeks later you see this beautiful tomato or broccoli and it’s like, ‘Look at that! I grew that!’ I get to come out here and grow vegetables for people who really need them and don’t have access to good food. I think agriculture is a really interesting field. After I get out of high school, I would like to study it.”