Capitol High School celebrates groundbreaking of new community garden
BATON ROUGE - As the battle against COVID-19 and its economic ramifications wages on, educators at Capitol High School are teaming up with local experts to teach students how to use horticulture to win the fight against food insecurity and related anxities.
Groups of students spent the summer learning how to work with plants, a pastime that researchers say is helpful in maintaining healthy blood pressure levels and in contributing to improvements in mood and mental health.
As of Wednesday, October 14 the students have an opportunity to expand their horticultural efforts in their brand new half-acre community garden on school grounds.
On Wednesday morning, local officials joined school leaders for the groundbreaking ceremony.
East Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome, a sponsor of the garden via her Geaux Get Healthy initiative, was among the community partners at the 10 a.m. event on Capitol High's campus.
“Geaux Get Healthy’s collaboration with community stakeholders allows us to address food access in Baton Rouge. Through our school garden programs, we are empowering our youth with the knowledge, skills, and resources they need to cultivate nutritious foods,” said Mayor Broome. “Our work here is allowing us to improve access to healthy foods, and create a stronger foundation for our community here in Baton Rouge.”
The new community garden is expected to provide students with access to healthy food as they continue to learn more about growing fresh fruits and vegetables.
It's an exciting venture that's expected to produce long-term results for students; experts agree that youths who learn to grow their own food typically develop a healthy relationship with food -a rare perspective in some urban communities- and often perform at increased levels in the educational arena.
Through a partnership with Baton Roots Community Farm and Geaux Get Healthy, the Hustle and Grow program is working with Capitol High students to teach them how to grow and cook fresh food.
In addition to benefiting students, the garden will also help locals, as all of its produce will be distributed to area communities.
The new community garden is one of Capitol High's many features school leaders are implementing to contribute to the educational progress of their student population. Click here for more information on the school and its programs.
Mayor Broome's Geaux Get Healthy initiative is also supporting the construction of community gardens at Glen Oaks High School and Scotlandville High School.