By Staff Reports
(Apple Valley)– Liberty Utilities Apple Valley and its partners, the Mojave Water Agency and Apple Valley Unified School District (AVUSD), celebrated the renovation and opening of the school garden at the Yucca Loma Elementary School on Friday, Sept. 22.
The garden was originally created 10 years ago to encourage healthy eating and provide produce for families with limited resources. Recently, it was outfitted with a food growing house and water-efficient irrigation through the expansion funded by a partnership between Liberty Utilities Apple Valley and the Mojave Water Agency. The latest improvements will help increase the garden’s harvest, while reducing its water footprint and providing valuable opportunities to educate students regarding nutrition, agriculture and efficient water irrigation.
“Liberty Utilities Apple Valley is proud to support the Yucca Loma Elementary School garden expansion,” said Norma Armenta, Conservation Specialist with Liberty Utilities Apple Valley. “The garden will serve students, parents and the community in many ways, including as a venue for hosting educational workshops on how to create a garden and teaching the importance of sustainability and using water responsibly. In addition, the garden’s harvest will be shared with the school’s families for healthy eating.”
The renovation project kicked off with a groundbreaking ceremony on May 23 and was completed over a six-week period. Once again open for business, the garden is supported by the school and local community, and produce grown on-site is distributed through the Yucca Loma Elementary Family Center.
“The Yucca Loma School Garden has been a wonderful place for our community to gather, learn, exercise, and receive access to healthy foods, and we are so excited to see that impact grow even larger with this renovation,” said Kristin Hernandez, AVUSD Public Information Officer. “We would like to thank our community partners for their support and their generosity, which will allow for us to serve even more families while conserving more water.”
“School-based projects are so important,” said Kimberly Cox, Mojave Water Agency Board President. “Teaching young students the natural beauty of native plants while teaching water conservation prepares the next generation to be good water stewards.”