SOL (Seeds of Leadership) Garden

We are pleased to once again offer  ‘Craft Your Own Life’ mini-internship. This year we offer two sessions, one for ages 20-24 from June 10-13, another for ages 15-19 August 5-8. Get details and application info here. Applications received by May 1 are prioritized, and we will accept on a rolling basis so do not delay! We are grateful to Common Good Greenfield, Greenfield Cooperative Farmers Exchange, and generous individuals for their support of this program.

We celebrated 20 years of SOL (Seeds of Leadership) Garden in 2018, our longest running program, and an amazing, life-changing experience for youth and staff alike! We have transitioned this to our Craft Your Own Life Program, and hope others will learn from our resources and curricula below.

Enjoy a new, youth made video that shows a day in the life of our SOL Garden program!sol group 2013

Since the programs inception in 1998, 400 SOL Garden participants, most low-income and underemployed, have gained valuable life, college and career skills as they have: Cultivated a quarter acre garden and donated thousands of pounds of vegetables to families and senior citizens in our low-income community; Constructed their own 40′ solar greenhouse and designed and built the “SOL Shack” meeting space; Helped planted and tend gardens throughout the community at a shelter for homeless families, elementary schools, a hospital and health center, a library and for local families; Created and sold hundreds of ceramic SOL Bowls ; Given over 30 presentations at conferences and events; participated in Earth and Spirit youth retreats and outdoor adventure, workshops in nutrition, cooking, and healing arts, celebration art, and helped thousands learn, celebrate, and play at the North Quabbin Garlic and Arts Festival.sol girls building 2sol sowingfirst gen and sol groupsol lunch

Inspire your own program and teaching! We are happy to share our curriculum,  ‘Food for the SOL: Youth, Food, Justice and Community Building”

Enjoy the SOL Garden Blues we wrote with musician Katie Sachs, then performed at the North Quabbin Garlic and Arts Festival.

SOL Garden - Planting

I got a lot more confident in my ability to say and do things…to get a job done, roll up my sleeves and do it…SOL Garden is unbelievable and tremendously important. It pretty much carved out the life I have right now…There were people at SOL Garden who actually cared about what I had to say. Shawn

You come here and it’s like whatever is stressing you out vanishes because you know you have all these people here to support you and grow food with. There’s not drama, there’s no stress it’s just like the most relaxed atmosphere…the best place to be. Vanessa

Because of SOL Garden, I now think about my health, and what I eat. I think about how I live my life and the effects and impressions I make on others. I think about the world and how I have a choice to be an active citizen. I think about what small things I can do to make a difference and I think about big ideas that could change the world.Kacie

Coming here is the best decision I ever made. Jen 

SOL Group - Cooking

SOL Garden is free to local youth, and made possible through grants from the MA Cultural Council Youth Reach Program, The AT and T Aspire Program, The Green Leaf Foundation, and individual contributions.

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