Children’s Paradise Montessori School (CPMS) had an insightful afternoon during the launching of its Grow It Yourself Community Pantry (GIY CP) Program in collaboration with Communities for Alternative Food Ecosystems Initiative (CAFEi) led by Ms. Teresa Ruellas. CAFEi has been successful in running this program which provides a framework for a sustainable & regenerative gardening for underserved urban residents.
After months of working from home, all CPMS teachers and employees gathered at Tabor Hill to get started with the GIY CP Orientation and Planning. Ms. Teresa was joined by Mr. Hal Atienza. This CPMS GIY CP is one of the key Nature-Smart initiatives of the school. This is open to all employees and parents to pioneer and eventually create a ripple effect in the community. Participants will be guided and coached to grow their own food gardens at home and eventually provide organic fruits and vegetables for personal consumption and even for livelihood. Phase I of the program consists of the CPMS Apprenticeship Program which enables a circle of CPMS green enthusiasts to be trained to be trainers / facilitators of the CPMS GIY CP. They are given the opportunity to learn how to grow their own food at home and eventually share their experience and learnings to the community by conducting workshops as well.
The CPMS Team got so excited when Sir Hal shared about community organizing and development that led the conversation to how CPMS may create its own cooperative. He encouraged everyone to start with savings mobilization to build capital for a common and relevant purpose. The COOP will generate passive income and can even provide for a retirement fund for its members. It surely will be among the future dreams that CPMS will fulfill. This CPMS Coop will foster entrepreneurship and leadership among our future adolescents in high school together with the community of teachers, parents, etc.