The Global Awareness Team and the Geography class hosted a Lunch and Learn on Wednesday April 30th. Randy from Can YA Love shared information with students and staff about the organization he co-founded. His organization is dedicated to creating a global community that believes in helping people sustain the basic necessities of life. To achieve this goal, Can Ya Love builds and develops gardening systems that can thrive in some of the harshest and most densely populated environments on Earth. Topics at the Lunch and Learn included; arable land loss, modern agriculture, desertification, urban development and slum living, global population/demographics, and how we can actually turn this situation around.

Randy also discussed his current research where he will be growing swiss chard. Knowing this the Global Awareness Team decided to cook a special creation – cheese quesadillas with the a swiss chard topping! While Randy spoke, we dined on delicious and healthy food made by the students.

Randy is currently part of a research project gathering data on how much food can be grown in a 9 square foot space. But before the research could begin, he needed a place to grow the seedlings. The YMCA Academy students (Geography class and Resource class) spent 3rd period preparing pots and soil in preparation to planting swish chard.

Our worm cast came from our worm bins that the school has been looking after for 3 years. The casts were taken out and new bins were prepared for our wiggly friends. We mixed coir, compost, potting soil and worm casts into a rich blend of soil, which was distributed into many pots donated from several families. (Thank you again for your on-going support!) The seeds that we sowed today will be looked after by our students for 4 weeks and then transplanted into vertical gardens for this research project. In the fall, we will have an opportunity to find out how our plants did and how much was produced in such a small space.

We look forward to watching our seedlings grow and don’t be surprised if in 4 short weeks, a small swish chard makes its way to your home. All students who helped with the plantings will be offered a plant. The Academy was very appreciative that Randy could take the time to come and share his meaningful work with us. It is important to be reminded of the ever-growing global disparities and learn about practical ways we can contribute to creating positive change.

Check out the rest the rest of the pictures on our Facebook page!

Apr 30th, 2014 – Lunch and Learn (Can YA Love)

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