Now that things are slowing down for the winter, we thought we’d catch you up on what we’ve been doing over the past few months!
The Treasure Island Urban Farm officially broke ground, this past Spring… twice!
The second ground-breaking was our center-wide Earth Day Celebration during which we had the chance to thank the inspiration and the backers of the farm project, including but not limited to Dr. Barbara Long and Jack Reisner for their vision, Brian Daher, Regional Director, and Mike Hoey for their ongoing support, and John Bjerke, Bob Christensen, Kenneth Douglas and Willow Rosenthal for their proposal and the kick-off. With the help of our Facility Maintenance Trade, we even planted the first strip of perennial shrubs and trees that will provide the farm with shelter from the wind, habitat for beneficial insects and birds, as well as a little color and beauty to mark the edge of the farm.
But credit for the actual breaking-of-ground goes entirely to an incredible crew of trainees and instructors from the Sacramento Job Corps Center. In an all-but unprecedented collaboration between Job Corps Centers, 8 students and 2 instructors from the Heavy Equipment Operator and Mechanic trades came to offer their services and provide valuable on-the-job training for their students while clearing and grading the farm site for future construction. With the help of a 25,000 lb front-end loader, some elbow grease and a nice onshore breeze, our fearless Sacramento crew sorted through the onsite rubble, tackling a lofty pile at the North end of the site, separating out concrete chunks that we’ll reuse on the farm, and isolating green-waste materials and tree prunings to be chipped or composted. The grading team shot benchmarks with a laser and, the whole team distributed soil throughout the site to create a level work space and ensure even drainage.
The Sacramento team stayed on center for a week, enjoying the change of scenery, and working hard! They were gracious visitors, impressed by TIJC’s food and our beautiful surroundings, and their presence even sparked the interest of some of our trainees in the Heavy Equipment trades! We are eternally grateful for their gift of service and this wonderful and highly successful opportunity for our Job Corps centers to share skills and provide training opportunities for each other. They truly made the farm construction a reality, and set the bar incredibly high for our trainees. Thanks again, Sacramento Job Corps, for a job incredibly well done- we hope to work with you again soon!