PHARR, Texas – What was inspired by an interactive history lesson, has sprouted into a beautiful new community garden at Pharr-San Juan-Alamo ISD’s Buell Central Campus thanks to two generous grants totaling $24,500 from Lowe’s.
According to Buell Central Social Studies Teacher Stacey Proctor, the project was inspired by a lesson on the Homestead Act of 1862 that taught students about how the early settlers were able to keep over 160 acres of land if they raised livestock or cultivated. Through project-based learning, students were then inspired to find ways to cultivate their own food through a community garden.
According to the social studies teacher, the grants of $23,000 and $1,500 were used to create a “Greenhouse That Gives Back” solar-powered classroom equipped with a lab/kitchen and hydroponic system and several lifted outside garden beds accessible for all students.
In addition to the community garden at Buell, at PSJA ISD students get to learn about sustainability and environmental awareness through their curriculum and extracurricular organizations. Many get to learn about nature and the environment through outdoor classrooms that feature native habitat gardens.
Seeing the impact their donation had on the students and community, Pharr Lowe’s Store Manager Bernardo Claros felt honored to have helped give back. “I am at a loss for words,” said Claros. “It’s absolutely important for us to give through projects like these. As a company, we are honored to be part of something bigger and give back to our community.”