Georgia Southern aquaponics farm on Armstrong Campus donates produce during COVID-19 pandemic
The folks at FORAM Sustainable Aquaponics Research Center (SARC) on Georgia Southern University’s Armstrong Campus want you to know that sustainability is at the forefront -- even during a pandemic.
SARC recently donated produce grown at the aquaponics farm on campus to America’s Second Harvest of Coastal Georgia. Donations like this, as well as other community service projects, are a large part of SARC’s mission.
“SARC’s mission has always included community outreach and education, which means knowing how we can support the community when it’s in need,” SARC curator Brigette Brinton said. “Right now we’re just supplying food instead of information.”
Brinton said it’s also important to make sure the food grown at the aquaponics farm isn’t wasted in order to be as sustainable as possible.
“We are donating produce that would otherwise be in excess or go bad before being consumed,” she said. “We had a lot of lettuce ready to plant just after spring break that would normally have gone to the Southern Cafe, but they don’t need it, and the heat is causing it to bolt and wilt quickly. So far, we’ve donated lettuce and kale, and soon it will be lettuce and chard.”
Brinton, two student workers and SARC senior scientist Heather Joesting, Ph.D., have been working at the aquaponics farm during the period of social distancing to make sure the produce growing in the greenhouse remains usable.
In addition to donating produce to Second Harvest, the research center partners with the Nine Line Foundation to help show homeless veterans how to grow their own food. Also, they partner with Savannah State University to help integrate aquaponics into K-12 curriculum.
Salvation Army provides curbside family meals
Salvation Army served family meals at their Community Center on Bee Road last week as part of their feeding program to help during the pandemic.
While open to the public, cars were asked to pull up to the curb for families to receive their meals through car windows.
“The Salvation Army will feed minds as well as bodies,” they say, by including a free children’s book with these meals to families who would like something to read with their children.