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City must fund SOIL project

The city of Durango should support the SOIL project spearheaded by Durango School District 9-R teacher Charlie Love and partners in creating a new community garden on the Riverview Elementary School campus. For nine years, the Ohana Kuleana garden flourished, and fed people physically and spiritually. Now it deserves a new home. Keep us famous for the Durango Difference – practicing principles with action.

What could be more beneficial and educationally sound than SOIL? The name is perfect: Seeds – planting them with little hands that will reap healthy food, enhance scientific knowledge and raise community spirit. Outdoor: While Colorado has one of the leanest adult populations in America (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stats), more than 20% of our 6- to 11-year-olds are obese; 12.7% of 2- to 5-year-olds and more than 22% of teenagers are too fat. Numbers are even higher for our Hispanic and Black children.

Being outdoors helps children appreciate physical activity, especially when tied to authentic learning. The Inspiration element: One thing our students desperately need today is inspiration. Hope for growth. Belief that through our own actions and working with others on a common vision and a real goal, our world will improve. The lab: Learning by doing works best for students, and designing, building, planting, cultivating and harvesting a garden offers it all. Like Jiminy Cricket, let your conscience be your guide. Show you care about the health, and future of our students and our planet.

Stephanie Moran