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A Community Garden Allows for Hands-On Work for FFA Students

JACKSON- For most high school students, dealing with things like dirt and worms might freak them out a little bit. but for the Future Farmers of America in Jackson... the story is a little different.

Right now, the family owners of Casey Jones Village are working with the FFA students at South Side High School, planting and harvesting a community garden to share with locals and tourists alike.

“We get over 500,000 people through our village every year from all over the world, so these kids are going to be able to see how what they do affects their community and their state,” says Juanita Shaw, co-owner of the village.

The students' current project involves implementing red wiggler worms into the garden space to help compost the Shaw family's scraps, helping to create more sustainability.

The FFA team says not only is this a learning opportunity for the students, but for people in the community as well.

“This is important, not just to kids in agriculture, but everybody has to eat. We all have a couple of meals a day,” says FFA advisor Melissa Perry. “Here in Jackson, we have a lot of people that come through here and don't realize where their food comes from. I think that's what shocking to these ag kids is that, this summer, people would come through, and they had never seen corn inside the shuck.

As the program continues, students will get more and more hands-on experience in the farming world, and will get to share their hard work with everyone else.

Every high school, I think, has an agriculture department, and these kids are doing that...but nobody gets to see it outside of their own world. The world gets to see what they're doing here,” Shaw says.

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