Check out the following testimonials from these Groundwork partners who are Champions of Change.
Andrea Romeyn, Providence Farm in Antrim County
“Over the last 15 years Groundwork has really laid the ‘groundwork’ for everything that’s been happening in the region that positively affects both big and small farms. We’re getting local food on local plates. That’s a miracle in and of itself, but it wasn’t without intention and a lot of good work from a lot of people.”
“I have a personal story that’s due to the good work at Groundwork. I was (working) at the Traverse City farmers market one day, and a little boy spotted parsnips from across the aisle. He dragged his mom across the street, saying ‘parsnips, parsnips! Please, mom, can I buy some parsnips?’ The mom said, ‘I’ve never seen a parsnip before. (He must know about them because of) farm to school. Meanwhile, he’s picking out the biggest, most gnarly parsnips and holding it to his chest. He said, ‘I know how to cook that and eat it. It’s really good.’ (The mother) gave farm to school credit for that.”
“We need to educate the kid and get it into school lunches. It’s ingenious to have the farmers visit schools and the kids visit the farms. I applaud what Groundwork has done. I hope someday kids will say, ‘you mean there was a time when our lunches weren’t from local farms?’”
Mike Hill, Traverse Bay Area Intermediate School District superintendent
Mike Hill, superintendent at the Traverse Bay Area Intermediate School District, became committed to supporting Farm to School after seeing the difference it made for his son Jordan.
“Imagine being in middle school, as an overweight boy,” he said. “You go to your school each day, eating pizza and hot dogs. Amazingly, the school adopts a farm to school and fresh food concept. The young man starts a mission to eat healthy. Four years later you have a valedictorian of his class, all-state athlete and ambassador for fresh, locally grown food. The school made the difference. We cannot underestimate the impact this has for our priority, children.”
Beryl Skrocki, Sleeping Bear Surf & Kayak owner, Great Lakes Business Network member
“I live here along the shoreline, and I love Lake Michigan,” said Beryl Skrocki, owner of Sleeping Bear Surf & Kayak in Empire, and a member of the Great Lakes Business Network (GLBN). GLBN gives a voice to business leaders calling to decommission Pipeline 5 in the Straits of Mackinac. “My business would fail to exist without Lake Michigan. My whole business model revolves around using the Great Lakes and all it has to offer.”
Jacob Wheeler is Groundwork's communications manager. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.