Planting Possibilities, of Highland, has been awarded a grant for nearly $25,000 from the Lake County Community Fund at Legacy Foundation to fund a gardening and growing education program at Campagna Academy in Schererville.
The Campagna Project will teach gardening and growing skills to residents at Campagna Academy who are challenged with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
With the grant, Planting Possibilities will purchase and construct a small greenhouse and plant a large tomato and pepper garden on Campagna’s campus this spring.
Since receiving the grant, Planting Possibilities has planted two thousand tomato and pepper seeds under growing lights in the Campagna Center. Currently tended by Planting Possibilities board members Mark Neiner and Brad Hemingway, Campagna students have joined in the seedling care and will help transfer the seedlings to larger pots, then into the garden on campus.
“The Campagna Project was developed by combing through countless gardening education programs and carefully selecting the projects and educational material appropriate for our group of students,” said Mary Anne Neiner, founder of Planting Possibilities.
Program director for the Campagna Project is James Hitz, a locally respected horticulturalist. Classes for eligible Campagna students will be held twice a week, offering gardening activities and lessons.
Additionally, Planting Possibilities is seeking community volunteers to help with classes and gardening activities at the nonprofit social services agency that serves at-risk boys and girls through on-campus residential care and home- and community-based services.
If interested, contact Mark Neiner at (219) 237-9353 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
“We are very excited and proud to have this project under way,” said Mary Anne Neiner. “Since we began our mission three years ago, we have been generously supported by many individuals and businesses in Lake County.
"It is due to that support that we have been able to develop this pilot program. We are deeply grateful to the Legacy Foundation, and to Executive Director Elena Dwyre of Campagna Academy for reaching out to suggest this collaboration.”
Planting Possibilities continues looking for a location for a permanent greenhouse facility, as well as to connect with those who share their vision. To join the efforts to build a greenhouse that will employ and job-train adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, contact Mark or Mary Anne Neiner at (219) 237-9353 or email@example.com.