Students learning in their outdoor classroom

Students learning in their outdoor classroom

Educating the youth of today about healthier ways of living is becoming more important and stressed in our society. Several different organizations and programs are being developed to instill the importance of working hard for a better way of life. One organization in particular working on this goal is Sacramento’s Soil Born Farms. Their mission is to create an urban agricultural and educational project that will empower the youth and adults of Sacramento to discover and participate in the local food system. This organization not only provides the community with organic neighborhood farms, but a strong educational experience with a variety of classes, workshops and the Green Corps Job program.

The Green Corps Job Program was set up by Shawn Harrison, Co-Director of Soil Born Farms, as a way to connect Sacramento youth who are up against diverse barriers to future employment. This program provides hands-on training and work experience that will lead the youth members to higher education or employment in a green career. The Green Corps Job Program is for high school seniors who meet the program requirements and successfully make it through the application process. Work will then begin on the program’s 55-acre American River Ranch in Rancho Cordova, near the Cordova High School.

Students selected into the program are provided with a week of training in the basics of work performance for any job. They focus on and they develop strong basic skills such as communication, team building, and proper worksite behavior. Then for two weeks the youth participate in training in four categories; sustainable urban agriculture, environmental stewardship, health education and food access. After this preparation and education, the teens expand on their learning by working in the Soil Born farm stand and participating in community service projects.

“This program is one of many aimed at Sacramento youth,” says Mary Choy, an employee of Soil Born Farms. “The Green Corps Job Program is here to give the kids a productive, healthy and educational start at becoming better people in the future.”

By weaving together the learning of skills and hands-on work experience, the Green Corps Job Program is creating a strong and skilled generation of youth that will have the abilities to make it in to college and find future employment in the ever-growing fields of agriculture and education.

For more information about the Green Corps Job Program or other Soil Born Farm programs visit their website at http://www.soilborn.org or call the main office at (916)363-9685.