The Dig Kids – an Urban Farming Program is Awarded Funding through Community Development Block Grant

The Dig Kids in 2012 get oriented.

The Dig Kids – an Urban Farming Program of the Kingston Land Trust is awarded funding from the City of Kingston’s Community Development Block Grant in 2012 .   Kingston youth have been selected this season that include Farm Assistants, Garden Mentors and Jr. Gardeners who will practice urban farming methods at two midtown locations two days a week from May through late August.

Kingston – ‘The Dig Kids – an Urban Farming Program”  is charged in working with Kingston youth to grow food, learn farming practices, encourage entrepreneurship, beautification, pride and good health through hands on farming experiences. Created by the Kingston Land Trust in partnership with Kingston Cares (a program of Family of Woodstock), The South Pine Street City Farm and with support from the Kingston Parks and Recreation Department and sponsored by Croswell Enterprises,  the Kingston Land Trust welcomes its youth participants in 2012.

Garden Mentors (14-21 of age) were selected during an application process and will be paid an educational stipend that include Kingston residents Jehan Senai Worthy,  Jamel Keyes,  Robert FitzgeraldDeon Edmond and Shannon Cowgill.   As part of the program’s mission, Jr. Gardeners (13 or younger) were also selected and will be mentored by the Dig Kids. 

Two Dig Kids from last season, Matthew Brownlee and Brenda Olivo were promoted as “Farmer Assistants” to the Dig Kids Program Coordinator, first generation organic farmer and founder of the South Pine Street City Farm Jesica Clark.  Clark will be joined this year by Valerie Linet of Boiceville, also a Coordinator of the program. 

“Creating opportunities for youth to get practical farming experience through the Dig Kids is key.  Last year, we found that two of our Dig Kids developed a real interest in the work and we were able to promote them to Farm Assistants in 2012,”  says Rebecca Martin, Executive Director of the Kingston Land Trust. “I’m proud that our program can accommodate youth interest in this way, as it helps to illustrate the possibilities to young, budding farmers.”

Partial funding for “The Dig Kids – an Urban Farming Program” was awarded to the Kingston Land Trust by the City of Kingston through the Community Development Block Grant, a program that is designed to develop viable urban communities through housing, economic development, elimination of slums and blight, expansion of community services and neighborhood revitalization. 

If you are interested in “The Dig Kids – an Urban Farming Program” or any other of the initiatives of the Kingston Land Trust Urban Agriculture Committee visit www.kingstonlandtrust.org or contact Rebecca Martin, Executive Director at 845/877-LAND or 845/750-7295.

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About the Kingston Land Trust – An urban trust, the Kingston Land Trust is a 501c3 non-profit organization committed to theprotection and preservation of open space, historic sites, wetlands, scenic areas, and forests in the City of Kingston and thesurrounding region to include the Town of Ulster and the Town of Kingston.www.kingstonlandtrust.org

About Kingston Cares –  Kingston Cares is a community collaborative sponsored by Family of Woodstock, Inc. and funded by the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration through a Drug Free Communities grant. For more information, visit:LINK

About The South Pine Street City Farm –  The South Pine Street City Farm is dedicated to serve as a model of urban agriculture for the City of Kingston and beyond.  This small scale market garden will show that agriculture can thrive in an urban environment while also providing important educational components to encourage other farm projects throughout urban areas in the Hudson Valley.  The farm and its growers will work in partnerships with individuals and organizations in the community to achieve a farm and food based network.   With support from Binnewater Ice, Co. and the Kingston Land Trust.  For more, visit LINK

About Croswell Enterprises, Inc.-   Croswell Enterprises, LTD’s philosophy is simple: provide high quality bulk landscaping materials with old fashioned service. While their website provides a wealth of information, they welcome your calls to discuss and make recommendations for your individual project. Their products include: Dynagro Garden Soil, Dynagro Topsoil, Dynamulch, Landscape Mulch, Dynagro Super Rich Compost, Gravel and Round River Stone. Dynagro Garden Soil and Dynamulch are their most popular products. Dynagro Garden Soil is a custom blended soil,ready to plant!  Rich in organic material with a light texture and balanced ph, this soil is perfect for flower and vegetable growing. Dynamulch TM is a compost enriched mulch which can be used as a mulch or as a soil conditioner. For more information, feel free to contact their office at (845) 331-4232, visit them at croswellenterprises.com or friend them on FACEBOOK

About the City of Kingston Parks and Recreation Department – Led by Director Kevin Gilfeather, the Kingston Parks and Recreation Department oversees Kingston’s park system and organizes many programs for residents and tourists that include boating, kayaking, youth, adult and senior programs, environmental education, adult sports and more.  www.kingston-ny.gov

 

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