As part of its mission of building a stronger and safer community on Milwaukee’s northwest side, Silver Spring Neighborhood Center has partnered with several local organizations to launch a new program that teaches youth about urban agriculture.
The neighborhood center is now the site of the Urban Greenhouse Revitalization Project, a collaboration of SHARP Literacy, Milwaukee School of Engineering, Teens Grow Greens and many other partners.
The center’s greenhouse and garden beds provide opportunities for students to learn about urban agriculture, and the produce grown there is donated to the center’s food pantry and is used in cooking classes.
“All the partners in the Urban Greenhouse Revitalization Project are committed to supporting the students and families in the Westlawn neighborhood, where Browning Elementary and SSNC are located,” said Lynda Kohler, president and chief executive officer of SHARP Literacy. “The area is categorized as a food desert, with few grocery stores and even fewer options for fresh fruits and vegetables.”
The program teaches elementary students about the importance of fresh foods and healthy eating, while growing food in the greenhouse and gardens teaches them important science concepts and life skills, Kohler said.
“When I really think about the people that have come through our programs, the people that work there, there’s an awesome ability to create authentic and genuine relationships and that’s really what has made us an excellent organization.”
– Devin Hudson, executive director, Silver Spring Neighborhood Center