Serving The Community: One Seed At A Time

Teen Growers fills a growing hunger within the community.


Amanya Gonzales, Editor-in-Chief

 Faith like a grain of mustard seed…

Church Community Services has always made its mission to impact the community in positive ways. Through its volunteers and donors, it has been able to provide the community with a wonderful program: Seed to Feed.

Seed to Feed works to combat food insecurity in Elkhart county. Food insecurity is a problem that many communities face, including this one. However, Seed to Feed works directly with the food pantry to provide produce for families in need. Within this program lies a separate program, involving the teens of the community.

Teen Growers works with Seed to Feed through its various gardens and greenhouse. The growers have the chance to grow their own plot and fill it with the plants of their choice. These students work hands-on throughout this program and learn about the issues with food that society faces today. Among the growers is Elkhart-West’s very own, Wichita Keen, 10. “Seed to Feed drew me in because of the opportunity for new experiences,” she explains. “I really wanted to learn more about how to garden, and I thought Why not get hands-on experience and get paid to do it!

Throughout her journey, Keen has not only learned how to garden but has also learned about the impact food has in our world. She states, “Through the job, I have learned not only the proper way to handle and harvest plants, but I have also learned about the many ways food plays a
role in our lives and culture.” Food, often, is seen as something that is entitled; however, that is further from the truth. Food is not a right, but rather a privilege. “The internship has taught me how to better understand and interact with both plants AND people.”

The program has allowed growers like Wichita Keen to make stronger connections and understand what food is. Keen adds,”I have also learned so much about perseverance during the internship–having to work in the rain, wind, and heat.” Continuing on, she add, “It has shown me how much I can push myself and still produce meaningful results.”

It goes to show that Teen Growers not only helps grow its plants, but also helps grow the individuals within it.