“In urban areas, it is a challenge to access healthy foods,” Meloeny said. “Planting trees is an opportunity for students to see and experience production in their backyard.”
Cheryl Martin, a student support specialist at Highland Park High School, said she is excited about what could come from the greenhouse project.
“Project Greenhouse is totally new for the kids,” Martin said as she watched Howard and Highland Park students work together. “I am trying to get them motivated to get involved. It is exposing them to the root of where the fruits and vegetables come from.”
Most of the students, Martin said, go the grocery store, pick out their produce, but have little knowledge of how it is grown. Project Greenhouse will help the students become more aware of how their foods are made and make them more conscious of what they consume, she said.
Asti Marie Keeling, a junior at the high school, is one of the students working in the greenhouse.
“It helps me eat a better diet,” Keeling said as she worked with her mentor for the week, Toni Franklin, a sophomore at Howard. “Now I eat healthier.”
Tony R. Johnson, site coordinator for ASB in Detroit, said he thinks Project Greenhouse is a great opportunity for the school.
“Having a greenhouse on the property establishes the foundation of service in such a way that it recycles the school’s resources,” Johnson said. “Providing the opportunity for students to cultivate and harvest their produce creates a greater sense of self and unity.”
For more information on the efforts to make the Highland Park greener, visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rb65VXirXbk&feature=related