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Announcing Youth Leaders in Agriculture!
Augusta County is one of the top two agricultural-producing regions in the commonwealth. Still, we know through many intentional conversations with school leaders and students that racial, gender, and economic injustices influence who has access to land, farming knowledge, and careers in agriculture. 
With this in mind, we are pleased to announce the launch of Youth Leaders in Agriculture (YLA), in partnership with school guidance counselors, teachers, and instructional staff in Staunton City Schools. Building a more just food system with youth leaders at the center is crucial to addressing economic and cultural inequalities for all students, their families, and our communities at large.
Youth Leaders participate in a team-building exercise called the Challenge Zone.

Youth Leaders in Agriculture engages high school juniors and seniors in mentorship, leadership development, and hands-on learning about farming, food and environmental education, and the food system. High school juniors will begin with a 140-hour academic mentorship for course credit on the Project GROWS farm, and will then be eligible to apply for a 280-hour paid internship for course credit over the summer growing season and into the fall semester of their senior year. Students will participate in weekly farm work and leadership workshops, engage in lessons on permaculture and agroecology, assist with K-12 food education for younger students, and take field trips into the community to learn about careers in our local food system.

Fiona and Sloan hard at work alongside our staff seeding peas and spinach in the greenhouse.

The pilot semester is well underway! Our two Youth Leaders in Agriculture for this spring, Fiona and Sloan, are both seniors at Staunton High School. This spring we are exploring the YLA focus areas (Farming, Leadership, and Health) through three big ideas (Design, Interdependence, and Cycles & Change). We're thrilled to be learning alongside these students this semester. Stay tuned for more updates about Youth Leaders in Agriculture! We're grateful to funding from the United Way of Staunton, Augusta County, and Waynesboro with support from the JustPax Fund and Schowalter Foundation that makes it possible for us to launch this new program.
Barn Construction Continues!
Barn construction began last week and the farm is very busy with activity! Check out last week's drone video to see the brand new public entrance on the southwestern side of the farm, which includes a driveway and parking area. As always, thanks to Governor's School senior Zack Shutt for drone footage!
Thanks to WHSV and NBC29 for this interview with Director of Operations Laura Faircloth and board member and barn committee member David Geiman highlighting the construction of The Barn at Project GROWS and the many ways it will support food production and food education on our 10 acres!
National CSA Week
Our 2021 CSA filled in 48 hours, a new record! We're grateful for the many ways this community is supporting local food.

We look forward to providing our CSA members with 20 weeks of yummy veggies and more. Check out the Virginia Farming (PBS) episode to learn more about our CSA!

 
Thank you to our Partners!
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Project GROWS
PO Box 781
Staunton, VA 24402
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Project GROWS · PO Box 781 · Staunton, VA 24402 · USA