After the local Community Parent Center donated a greenhouse to the Meadowbrook Alternative Program, students and staff immediately began investigating how to enhance the courtyard area.
Senior Jordan Ladd, 16, of Merrick wrote and received an $800 grant from Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation to help fund the project.
“We used some of the money to build raised garden beds,” explained Ladd. “The rest will go towards shelving for the greenhouse, gardening tools, seeds and soil.”
The idea is to supply families currently utilizing the district’s Community Cupboard food pantry, housed at the district’s administrative building on Brookside Avenue along with MAP.
“Right now if we can only give them items that are shelf-stable,” Ladd explained. “Fresh fruits and vegetables can be expensive and if you’re already having difficulty buying regular food, that might prevent someone from purchasing healthier options.”
Special education/social studies teacher Tiffany Rzempoluch and physical education/health teacher Karin McMahon have been advising the project. The Community Parent Center offers parenting education, support and resources for parents with children in grades kindergarten through 12.