Auburn community garden teaches kids the importance of a healthy lifestyle

Auburn community garden teaches kids the importance of a healthy lifestyle

AUBURN, AL (WTVM) - Directly across the street from Ebenezer Missionary Baptist Church in Auburn sits a community garden.

Its caretakers are kids, learning the importance of healthy eating and nutrition.

"We teach various things, all the aspects of growing food and making it nutritious and trying to make it fun," explains Program Coordinator Earl Tarver.

The program is called "Connecting People and Food- a Community Effort" and it is funded by the Mid South Resource and Development Council.

In a partnership with two churches and the group I Am My Brother's Keeper, children between the ages of eight and 17 learn how to get back to the basics.

"We plant tomatoes.. and squash. We learn how to plant them, pick them and eat them," says a participant.

Fueled by a passion of fighting hunger, Tarver began this program two years ago.

The group takes field trips to local stores learning how to buy organically and to the wellness center to emphasize the importance of exercise.

"We try to focus on diabetes, obesity and the proper way to eat and nutrition," says Tarver.

According to over 19 percent of the state's population is food insecure. In our area every one in three residents are hungry.

Tarver hopes this camp opens eyes to the need in our own backyard.

"Sometimes it is right outside your backdoor and what we end up doing is once we harvest, we donate a bunch of the vegetables to the food bank," explains Tarver.

At the end of each season the vegetables are picked and meal is prepared for the families of the church.

The food is also donated to the East Alabama Food Bank and people in need.

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