Waimea workshops on home food gardening coming up

MEDIA RELEASE

A ‘Worm Guy’ And A Hawaiian Navigator To Share Perspectives On Growing Our Own Food

What do a nationally recognized “worm guy” and a highly regarded native Hawaiian navigator have in common?

Answer: Both have agreed to share their wisdom and expertise on how and why we should grow more of our own food with Waimea students, families and community friends as part of the final two free workshops in a series hosted by Mala’ai: The Culinary Garden of Waimea Middle School to encourage home food gardening.

Workshops will include:

  • LET WORMS DO THE WORK IN YOUR GARDEN: A FREE VERMICOMPOSTING WORKSHOP: 10 a.m. – noon, Sat., April 2, 2011. Presenter Dr. Norman Q. Arancon, PhD, is one of the country’s leading “worm guys” – aka vermiculturists. He was wooed to UH-Hilo to boost its sustainable agriculture research and support for local farming and gardening after having studied under Dr. Clive Edwards, now retired, but who at the time was the world’s authority on vermiculture as a technology to manage organic waste and produce soil amendments that allow farmers and gardeners to move away from chemical fertilizers.
  • MASTER NAVIGATOR CHADD PAISHON PRESENTS TALK-STORY: ‘HE WA’A HE MOKU, HE MOKU HE WA’A – THE CANOE IS AN ISLAND, THE ISLAND IS A CANOE’: 10:30 a.m. – Noon., Sat., April 30, 2011.

These workshops are being presented as part of the school-community educational commitment that Mala`ai is dedicated to, and coincide with the weekly Crop Share at Mala`ai, which is a pilot project to increase the availability of fresh fruits and vegetables to individuals and families by supporting distribution of excess foods grown in backyards and local farms. Crop Share is held every Saturday from 12:30-3 p.m. at Mala’ai. Everyone is invited to contribute to Crop Share and may exchange their donated foods, seeds and starts for other items, or may contribute for the benefit of others. All produce left over after the sharing occurs is contributed to Waimea food pantries and families in need.

Mala’ai, which is a 6-year-old organic learning garden primarily for Waimea Middle School students, is a not-for-profit partnership funded entirely by the community to improve student learning, achievement, health and wellness, and also to inspire environmental and cultural stewardship. Mala’ai’s free school-community workshops and Crop Share are underwritten in part by the Richard Smart Fund and West Hawai’i Fund of the Hawai‘i Community Foundation, and the Kaiser Permanente Hawai’i Region Community Benefit Fund in partnership with The Kohala Center.

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