The Youth Gardening Program is our “flagship” program and where every participant must start. After completing a minimum of one summer with the Youth Gardening Program, participants may remain in YGP another season OR move up to the Leaf Out Program.
The Youth Gardening Program serves teens (13-18) facing barriers to success in their lives (special needs, at-risk for not graduating, behavioral/emotional challenges, living in poverty or single parent homes, and much more) in a supportive and nurturing environment. Our curriculum focuses on cultivating job & life skills, environmental stewardship and service by developing healthy relationships with people, food and community.
May through September, participants grow their own gardens and are taught a gardening curriculum, which emphasizes sustainable horticulture practices. In addition, they develop job and life skills such as responsibility, teamwork, communication, problem solving, and leadership. Students go on field trips, enjoy community service involvement and give tours of the gardens. Most of the pesticide-free produce is taken home by the students or donated to the local food bank. Those who successfully complete the program may earn school credit and a monetary achievement award.
The main portion of the program runs early June to mid August; Monday-Thursday 9-12. Additionally, there are a few required Saturday mornings throughout the summer (for planting, harvesting, and service work) as well as a few after school sessions in May, August and September. The Youth Gardening Program meets at the LYG gardens space at 907 S. Lincoln Ave. in Loveland. There is a $100 program fee.