Growing ‘the farm’ is crucialPublished 10:14am Thursday, December 6, 2012
Part of the beauty of the county’s work-farm program was always that it had great opportunity to, well, grow.
As the Ironton-Lawrence County Community Action Organization begins looking ahead at year two, that is exactly what is happening.
The original focus of the project was to reduce overcrowding at the jail, fill a community need and cut food costs by supplying the home-grown produce to the jail, the juvenile center, STAR Community Justice Center and the county food banks.
But the farm was also set up to teach the workers a variety of life skills, including those intangibles needed to get and keep a job. Now that education will be offered to more than just those in the work-release program.
In part because there is significant acreage that can be utilized and there are so many needs within the community, this makes perfect sense.
The potential is limitless as this program can help rehabilitate those who have made mistakes and are in the legal system as well as instill important characteristics into those who are trying to reenter the workforce.
Plus it helps the community.
The volume of food that the farm could generate is almost my modeling.
During one month at the farm the total pounds of produce was 13,717 or a market value of $17,753.
This could grow exponentially this year and the overall positive impact on our community doesn’t even have a price tag.