Nine years ago, thanks to a small team of supportive parents, WSCS established a school garden, which has become a powerful teaching tool in our learning landscape. Over the years, it has become a wonderful way to use the schoolyard as a classroom, reconnect students with God’s created world, and learn where food comes from.
Thanks to God’s blessing through community support at the February 2020 school auction WSCS raised funds for our Outdoor Education program, with the majority of the funds going towards building a hoop house on our campus. This hoop house will serve to increase the growing season providing more access to fresh fruits and veggies to our daycare, community, and local Northwest Food Pantry. We have a professional contractor that will be overseeing the structure’s high-quality construction. In addition, we continue to partner with Blandford Nature Center Farm as we grow from their expertise.
We had hoped to expedite the hoop house construction. It would have been an easier road if we could have obtained a quick permit. Yet, it seems like there is something bigger happening. We can see that God is a work and making a way. We’d appreciate your prayers as we work to grow this vision – that’s shared by others in our community.
WSCS now is working to support the efforts of the Urban Agriculture Committee, as there’s a need to change city policy to allow for our hoop house construction. The good news is that thanks to the work of this committee, there is a plan in place to present urban agriculture policy recommendations to the city. The sad news is that our hoop house construction will be put on hold until the city’s policy is changed. Keep reading, there’s a way that you can help!
Even though this wouldn’t have been the path of our choosing, we’re excited to be working towards positive change in our city. We’re hoping to shine a light for Jesus as we work with others in our community.
We’ll be sure to keep you posted on the developing details. You can also get involved. Visit the Urban Agriculture Committee Webpage and give feedback for the needed policy updates. This would be a great opportunity to put our students’ writing skills to use. Imagine flooding the city’s mailbox with the student voices asking for Also, let’s flood the city with notes to encourage them to take this issue to a needed vote.
Let’s write some letters! Here’s a great templateto get started.
Community members can contact the Planning Department via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or snail mail at 1120 Monroe Ave NW 3rd Floor Grand Rapids 49503.
Here are some talking points to assist in the letter writing process:
At this point, we have not received a timeline from the Planning Department about how soon these policy changes might be implemented. This is a real-world opportunity that our students can put their skills to use to create positive change. Imagine our city getting a pile of letters on this issue!
Praying that the Lord would make a way and He would be our ever-present help through this need.
Habakkuk 2:3 For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end—it will not lie. If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay.
Galatians 6:9 And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.
Read more: Growing Hearts & Minds in the School Garden