Did you know nearly 2.5 million families in Tennessee don’t know where they are going to get their next meal? The United States Department of Agriculture reports roughly 13.5% of households in the Volunteer State are classified as “food insecure.” Students at John Overton High School plan to be a part of the solution to this monumental problem.
The Overton FFA Chapter was awarded an FFA: Food for All grant this past month for $2,500 provided by the Howard G. Buffet Foundation. The Overton FFA Chapter will use this grant to support a year-long service-learning project that focuses on developing and implementing sustainable hunger programs in the Nashville community.
“At Overton, we want to educate our students. Not just during their high school career, but a life-long education,” said Kay Lawrence, Overton FFA Advisor. “Through the grant we will be establishing a school and community garden to educate students on soil, planting seasons, harvesting, and nutritious decisions.”
However, the benefit of the garden will not remain within the walls of the classroom. A key focus of the FFA mission is to serve others. Lawrence hopes her students use this opportunity to pay it forward.
“The information the students will get can go out to their families and the community as well,” Lawrence said. “Someday these students will no longer be in the classroom, but in the real-world. We want to send them there as prepared as possible.”
Over the course of the next year, the Overton FFA Chapter hopes to enroll more than 100 students in the garden program and harvest nearly 200 lbs. of produce.