CENTERVILLE, Ohio (WDTN) Kids at Centerville United Methodist Church are helping feed their classmates and learning a lesson in healthy eating along the way.
It’s a hands on project where kids are suppose to get dirty. The life lessons they’re learning along the way make this garden continue to grow beyond the summer months.
From a distance it looks like just another playground. But get up close behind this white fence and you’ll see it’s growing.
Instead of playing in here, eight year old Emily Durnbaugh has been working in the garden all summer long. But the fruits of her labor haven’t been going to her kitchen table.
Where’s the food going? Emily Durnbaugh says, “To children who need food who can’t afford food.”
Centerville United Methodist Church’s youth ministry created this garden to serve kids who receive free or reduced lunch during the school year.
They wanted to give kids fresh vegetables like green beans and tomatoes during the summer.
Josie Wood, Centerville United Methodist Church says “The whole goal of this was to have them get their hands dirty and learn how to grow food. Also to learn how to grow food for others all the days of their lives.”
Picking tomatoes and digging through the green beans trying to find the ones that are ready can be a difficult task to some but to Emily it’s fun. She found more tomatoes and couldn’t wait to show us.
The enthusiasm has spilled over into the congregation. Some members have brought over extra vegetables from their own gardens to share.
Adults did the brunt of the hard work in the beginning then they let the kids and mother nature take over.
Jack Durnbaugh, Church Member says “I’m happy the weather has been great but I’m more happy for the kids. They got to see the benefits harvesting some vegetables.”
Emily says she’s learned one important lesson, “To share food.”
So far the garden has been able to help ten to fifteen families in the church. The kids garden has also encouraged other members to bring their extra vegetables to give to the food program.