Peer-to-peer learning at its best
A group of passionate students toured Northampton Community College’s East 40 Garden, to see our neighboring college’s land stewardship practices. East 40’s manager, Professor Kelly Allen, took the LaFarm team on a robust tour, including a certified monarch waystation, a 9-acre forest, fruit trees, and community garden. The East 40 works to keep the culture in agriculture through their artist-in-residence program, with a wood-fired kiln actively firing pottery projects, and magical art installations throughout the forest. The LaFarm crew spent a portion of our visit getting down and dirty to help with projects like splitting wood and removing (very stubborn) fencing from around a garden plot. Here’s to nurturing this relationship between LaFarm and East 40 folks for years to come!
LaFarm continues to prioritize work that addresses food insecurity on our campus and in our neighborhood. 2021 marked our second year of partnership with Pard Pantry over summer break, when a small number of students were on campus, but dining halls were not running, to provide weekly access to fresh vegetables, totaling 185 pounds.
For the second year, Vegetables in Community summer stand operated under COVID protocols with 4 unstoppable masked students (plus some relentlessly-loyal volunteers we picked-up along the way) hosting 11 COVID-safe veggie stands, and distributing 20% of LaFarm’s total production at 10th & Pine in Easton.
And all of this produce couldn’t be possible without a tree-mendous amount of farm support campus-wide: 2021 started with a bang, with Alpha Gamma Delta hosting their week of service at LaFarm. Yes, we really did trudge through 2 feet of unplowed snow for 5 days of February volunteering to build raised beds in our high tunnel. In total, we hosted over 60 volunteer events, bringing over 500 student visitors to the farm to contribute a total of 829 volunteer hours building, harvesting, composting, cleaning-up, planting, and laughing.