Lesley community members recycle electronics, swap clothing, and enjoy the bounty of the Lesley Garden on Sustainability Day
Friday, October 25, 2013
Among the activities at Lesley, people brought clothing to swap; dropped off cell phones, chargers, batteries and other electronics for recycling; engaged in bicycle repair and safety demonstrations with Ace Wheelworks; and enjoyed an ultra-local tea and jam tasting created from the bounty of the Lesley Garden.
“We had a great turnout on Wednesday from faculty, staff, and students from every corner of the University. The local tea and jam table in particular were popular thanks to the students’ enthusiasm about promoting local foods,” said Michael Orr, Lesley’s sustainability coordinator.
Assistant Professor Aileen Bellwood, who teaches the Science and Ethics of Gardening class at Lesley, worked with her students to serve up jam and refreshing herbal teas that the students prepared with peppermint, spearmint, lavender and lemon basil harvested from the Lesley Garden.
“These herbal beverages are an alternative to unhealthy beverages made with high fructose corn syrup in an unsustainable, industrial food system,” Bellwood explained.
Lesley student Jordan Church, who was manning the tea and jam table on Sustainability Day, said it’s important for the Lesley community, and all people, to know where their food comes from.
“There are a lot of inefficiencies in agricultural production,” said Jordan, who is a junior studying environmental science and biology. “Any opportunity to learn about it and learn how to get rid of those inefficiencies is good.”
Jennifer Bucolo, who was manning the clothing swap table, echoed her classmate’s sentiment.
“I think it’s important for people to learn how to grow their own food,” noted Jennifer, a senior studying social change and environmental science. “With the current state of our food production, it’s hard to get healthy foods that didn’t take a serious toll on the environment. It’s important to strengthen our community here at Lesley where students have a stronger appreciation of nature, and the Lesley Garden is one way we do that.”
The Lesley Garden, which is located at the southwest corner of Lot B on the Doble Campus, serves as a laboratory for the Science & Ethics of Gardening Class. Most of the herbs growing in the garden were generously donated by Steph Zabel of Herbstalk, who spent a long sunny July afternoon planting them along with a group of Lesley summer volunteer gardeners. The Lesley summer volunteer gardeners helped to plant and tend the garden over the summer break.
This week also marks Food Day, a nationwide celebration and a movement for healthy, affordable and sustainable food, which ties in nicely with what the students are learning in the Gardening class, Bellwood said.“From a science perspective, it can be depressing because these problems are tied up in politics and related social issues, but this is part of the solution,” says Bellwood, who holds a PhD in conservation biology.
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