"JCC Growing Partners" Initiative Begins This Summer

June 20, 2013

By Kipp Friedman

The Jewish Community Center and Growing Power have entered into a new partnership to grow crops and educate people about making healthy food choices and lifestyle changes entitled, “JCC Growing Partners.” The new partnership will be phased in beginning this spring. Growing Power has been providing safe, affordable and
healthy food initiatives for communities for over 20 years under the leadership of Will Allen, a renowned leader in the “Good Food Movement”.  

The first phase of the JCC Growing Partners initiative will be the construction of a 60' x 60' education garden and a 40' hoop house a greenhouse (pictured above) at the Albert & Ann Deshur JCC Rainbow Day Camp in Fredonia, WI, said Lenny Kass, Director of the day camp. Crops will be planted this spring so that they will be available at the start of the summer, said Kass. Part of the produce grown will be used for Jewish philanthropic projects, including donations to the Jewish Community Pantry.  

Kass said the second phase of the JCC Growing Partners plan is the hiring of two staff throughout the summer to help educate and teach campers and the public. Kass said Growing Power will establish a Youth Corps of 15-year-olds who will spend two days a week throughout the summer at the day camp.The Youth Corps will be integrated with the camp activities so they can enjoy the total camp experience. Produce from the education garden will be used as snacks at camp, salads during Friday hot dog lunches and as part of the meals for camp overnight activities.

The JCC Growing Partners project will be used for year-round purposes, including off-season programming, recycling and composting,” said Kass, who added the initiative will also be used as a means to talk about childhood obesity, to teach children how to make gardens at home and to learn healthy eating habits.

In addition, Kass said underprivileged groups in need from throughout the community that are serviced throughout the summer at camp will also benefit from the new partnership with Growing Power.
Watch for further exciting news about the JCC Growing Partners initiative. For more information, contact Lenny Kass at lkass@jccmilwaukee.org or 414-967-8289.  Click here to sign your child up for JCC Rainbow Day Camp or any of our other JCC Summer Day Camps!

This article was reprinted from the 2013 Summer Centerline.  Click here to read more.