After a slow start to our Gibsons Area Community Schools garden, things started to pick up. With the help of a very enthusiastic volunteer we really started to roll. The weather hadn’t co operated as we would have liked and we saw virtually no advancement for the 2015/16 school year. For the 2016/17 school year we did manage to get all 11 large bedding boxes filled with rock on the bottom and fresh soil on top. These were filled with the assistance of the youth at our adjacent alternative school and the help of the teachers there. The alternative program also took on the task of building a medicine wheel. This project is a work in progress as they will add to their design as they see fit. The youth managed to turn out a magnificent display of co operation and hard work and the medicine wheel looks great. The alternative students still maintain a lot of the grounds around the garden and have made some split post to assist us in putting up netting to keep the animals out.

With some raised money and extra funding we managed to purchase a green house which we are hoping to be one of two. This will soon be given a gravel type floor and one of our volunteer parents will build us some potting benches for both inside and outside the green house with funds received by farm to school grant. There is also plans to have one of our other programs that teaches the trades build wooden benches for the garden. Truly a community built and driven garden.

In November of this year, with the donation of bulbs and fertilizer by a community school volunteer board member, every student in the school planted a daffodil bulb to create a remembrance garden in honor of the 100th anniversary to the end of the first world war. This project was well received by all the teachers and staff of Gibsons elementary school. Come spring we will have in excess of 350 daffodils of all colors blooming. Also this school year our children in our after school care program, along with the supervisors, planted a bed of garlic to use as a fundraiser to go towards future projects of their chosen. We have planted summer blueberry bushes for the summer out of school program to maintain, cultivate and make delicious food. We are also in the process of putting together a school garden club for students, run by our volunteer garden coordinator, in hopes to build the love of fresh vegetables and growing their own food. As well we have one of our grade 3/4 teachers spearheading the “seed” program so classrooms can learn to grow from beginning to finish product.

Overall it is a work in progress and without the help from grants like farm to schools things would be very difficult. Thank you.