Good Neighbors: Volunteering at School Gardens

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Dairylanders volunteered with GROW La Crosse at the Hintgen and Spence Elementary school gardens on Nov. 9, helping to put their gardens to bed for the winter. (Pictured with President & CEO Brent Ridge: Elizabeth Mueller, Ellie Meyer, Lisa Ridge, Nikki Gilbertson, Elyssa Cook, Abby Ocello.)

Dairyland is a GROW La Crosse corporate sponsor of Hintgen’s school garden. The GROW La Crosse sponsorship provides education and maintenance of the garden for students. This program is fully funded through community donations and grants. As the corporate sponsor, Dairyland is committed to supporting the urban garden for the next five years. Currently, the garden includes raised beds, Hmong garden demonstration area, shed and raspberry bushes. In addition to the sponsorship, employees are welcome to help with maintenance of the garden through a variety of volunteer opportunities.

Concern for Community: Dairyland collaborates with the La Crosse Public Education Foundation on its Adopt-a-School program as Hintgen Elementary’s partner. We support the school in many ways; most recently by providing a $2,000 combined donation from Dairyland and President & CEO Brent Ridge. Dairyland donated $1,000 in support of Hintgen’s schoolwide snack fund; Brent and his wife, Lisa, personally provided a matching contribution for a total of $2,000. Nearly 70 percent of Hintgen’s students qualify for Free and Reduced meals, due to their household income level. (The state average is 42% per school.)