The Union Democrat
Farms of Tuolumne County award funding to youth garden project and farmers market’s Kids’ Day
Kids Day at the Peaceful Valley Farmers Market and the garden at the Motherlode Regional Juvenile Detention Facility recently received grant money from the Farms of Tuolumne County.
Farms of Tuolumne County is a nonprofit organization that promotes local agriculture through marketing, education and agritourism.
The Kids' Day program encourages children to eat healthy food by awarding the “Veggie Bucks” to purchase products from the market's vendors.
“The hope is that, when a child gets an opportunity to purchase fresh veggies that they have selected from the farmer who grew them, it might plant in them a seed that will hopefully mature into a lifelong love of vegetables, shopping local and taking part in a wonderful community that a farmers market tends to provide,” said Erin O'hare, manager of the Peaceful Valley Farmers Market, in a news release.
The garden project at the youth detention center is mentored by U.C. Cooperative Extension, Central Sierra, Director Jolynn Miller. This is the second grant awarded for the extensive garden project.
“Since 2016 I have been working with students at MLRJDF using the 4-H model of experiential learning to introduce these under-served youths to various topics. Over the years we have watched seeds sprout, dissected flowers, built roller coasters, watched chickens hatch and, thanks to a 2018 grant by FOTC, expanded our garden,” Miller said.
The grant program is usually funded by the Farms of Tuolumne County's annual Farm and Ranch Tour, which has been put on hold the past two years. However, directors are planning to revive the annual event in June 2022.