The Central Virginian

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Lowe’s helps build garden at local school

Posted on Monday, October 2, 2017 at 9:45 am

Ellie Winnery, project manager for Lowe’s Heroes, helps Thomas Jefferson Elementary School Principal Dr. Bill Caten put topsoil into one of the new raised beds.

Sales associates and other employees from Lowe’s in Zions Crossroads volunteered their time Saturday to help build four new raised-bed gardens and a 55-foot stretch of planting area behind Thomas Jefferson Elementary school.

The project is part of an ongoing effort, called Lowe’s Heroes, to give back to communities where the company has stores. Employees donated materials and worked alongside public schools staff, including TJES Principal Dr. Bill Caten, Director of Nutrition Services Randy Herman, and Career and Technical Education Coordinator Kenny Bouwens.

The project is part of a countywide partnership with Lowe’s Heroes to build gardens at all Louisa County Public Schools, which has been underway throughout 2017. The project has already built gardens at Trevilians, Moss-Nuckols and Jouett Elementary Schools, and Randy Herman said they have yielded over 250 pounds of produce.

“The vegetables we grow here are harvested and served in our cafeterias,” Herman said. “For instance, we served steamed purple and green cabbage, kale and cherry tomatoes in one of our schools yesterday.”

The garden projects have been a success, with so many nutritional and educational opportunities being provided to children whose exposure to garden-fresh vegetables and horticulture education would have otherwise been minimal.

Ellie Winnery, Lowe’s Heroes project manager, said the store’s commitment to charity work in communities is a major part of its philanthropy.

“Lowe’s contributes over $30 million in the Lowe’s Heroes project, with employees around the country volunteering over 80,000 hours of their time,” Winnery said.

To read the entire story, see the Sept. 28 edition of The Central Virginian.