27 October 2009

Community Service: A Day at the Farm

by Tabeetha Sun, SFWHS Student

Because of my involvement in the Waldorf High School Environmental Club, I chose to work at Alemany Farm for my community service project. The farm is collaboratively run by city officials and Alemany residents, but it relies heavily on volunteer involvement to maintain and harvest the fruits and vegetables.
Our high school group worked on a regular Monday for volunteers, which anyone can attend.  We were given a tour of the site and saw dozens of varieties of edible plants.  When the trucks arrived with their trunks filled with mushrooms, we had to cart wheelbarrows full of the plants to our planting site and sort them into their categories.  As we were given a tutorial on the specifics of planting mushrooms, it began to rain heavily.  During the process of clearing the ground, disinfecting the plants, planting and covering them, the rain continued to pound down but we didn’t stop even when we were completely soaked to the skin!  Afterwards we were able to harvest any of the ripe produce grown on the farm and take it home with us. 

The whole experience really opened my eyes on how much work it takes to maintain a farm, or even a garden, and I really gained an appreciation for the work these people do.  I look forward to continuing my service days at the farm, although I hope we will not be so drenched!

Editors note: Alemany Farm empowers San Francisco residents to grow their own food, and through that process encourages people to become more engaged with their communities. Find out more about Alemany farms at www.alemanyfarm.org.