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City Kids Get Hands-on with Urban Farming Workshop

Updated: Feb 21

Planting seeds of change! Pasig workshop shows how urban farming can cultivate a greener tomorrow.

Pasig City, Philippines - Last Saturday, February 18, 2024, children, parents, and teachers in Pasig City traded classrooms for a canopy of trees, eager to learn about sustainable urban farming at a workshop titled "Halina sa Hardin, Tayo ay Magtanim" (Let's go to the garden, let's plant).

In a city where skyscrapers often dominate the skyline, the sight of families enthusiastically digging into soil and planting seedlings was a refreshing change.

Bridging the Gap: From Disconnection to Food Literacy

The Philippines, an agricultural nation, faces a surprising disconnect. Many Filipino children today lack basic knowledge about local food, where their food come from, and the hard work involved in growing it.

This workshop, organized by Studentdesk Integrated Montessori School in partnership with Pasig City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO), the Rainforest Park, and Child Champion Consulting aimed to bridge that gap by going beyond textbook learning. Local experts shared their knowledge and experiences on urban farming basics, composting, and seedling propagation through lecture and demonstrations.

Engagement & Empowerment: From Theory to Seedling

The workshop wasn't merely informative; it was immersive. Participants got their hands dirty, planting seedlings in the city's urban garden. This hands-on experience instilled a deeper appreciation for the work involved in growing food and fostered a connection with nature often absent in urban environments.

"It was amazing to see everyone so excited, from the children digging in the soil to the parents supporting them," shared School Head, Mr. Emerson Fababaer. "It's a great way to connect with nature and learn about where our food comes from."

The activity resonated deeply with parents who actively supported their children, demonstrating their commitment to a sustainable future and setting an example through action. The most exciting part? Participants can return to the garden to witness their plants flourish and reap the harvest of their efforts.

Sowing the Seeds of Sustainability: Beyond the Garden

The workshop didn't stop at planting. Using the living lab method, Ms.Jo-ann Caberoy of Child Champion Consulting facilitated a design challenge, encouraging participants to apply their newfound skills and knowledge. They brainstormed ideas for building a sustainable school garden, incorporating the importance of responsible resource management, climate considerations, waste minimization, and organic farming methods. Their enthusiasm and creativity were evident in their proposed designs.

Taking Root: Cultivating a Greener Future

The workshop culminated in a celebration of learning. Participants received certificates, gift packs with gardening tools, and a digital toolkit, empowering them to continue their urban farming journey at home. This ensures the workshop's impact extends far beyond the event itself.

This initiative by Studentdesk Integrated Montessori School aligns with the Philippines’ Ambisyon Natin 2040, reflecting the collective long-term vision and aspirations of Filipinos for a better and sustainable future. Furthermore, it echoes the growing movement of integrating urban farming education into school curriculums. By incorporating elements like food literacy, STEM integration, environmental awareness, life skills development, and community building, these programs are empowering future generations to be responsible and environmentally conscious citizens. The "Halina sa Hardin, Tayo ay Magtanim" workshop is a perfect example of how urban farming can sprout into a greener future for our communities and our planet.

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