PHARR, Texas – In true farm-to-table style, students in the PSJA Thomas Jefferson T-STEM Early College High School Garden Club, recently spent a morning harvesting fresh produce from their garden to help prepare part of the school lunch meal for hundreds of their peers.
The Titan Garden Club and PSJA Child Nutrition Department joined for the effort, and were able to incorporate two additional healthy food options for more than 550 students.
Among the vegetables they gathered were kale, carrots, beets and a variety of leafy greens. Once the greens were gathered and washed by the students, the PSJA Child Nutrition Department made crispy kale chips and used the remaining produce to make a healthy mixed green salad, topped with a homemade cucumber dressing.
“This is awesome because they get to understand how much work goes into doing this,” said Child Nutrition Program Food Production Supervisor Chef Rodrigo Puente. “They can also eat healthier and make better choices.”
For garden club member Erika Rodriguez, having the opportunity to provide her peers with the additional options left her feeling fulfilled.
“It makes me feel accomplished because we did something for our community,” Rodriguez said. “I really want to help maintain our community. Eating vegetables is good for your health.”