Kalamazoo County Jail Garden Program donates harvest to food bank

Posted at 6:14 PM, Aug 14, 2019

KALAMAZOO, Mich. -- The Kalamazoo County Jail has planted a vegetable garden again this year.

With help of contributions from local greenhouses, business owners, and private citizens, the Inmate Worker garden is flourishing.

From hundreds of rutabagas, green beans, cabbage and tomato plants, this garden project provides opportunity for inmate workers to learn hands-on gardening and harvested food preparation.

The goal is for low-risk inmates workers to learn and develop skills to take with them upon their release.

Kalamazoo County Sheriff, Richard Fuller, said "We’re fortunate to have the ability to teach people what it is to garden, what the importance is of a garden, and where vegetables come from. Every year I hear this from inmates and their families that they never knew that’s where carrots came from, they never knew that’s where a tomato came from, they’re used to going to the store. Once they see these things, and they realize they can grow these things, they’re on board.”

This year's harvest is being donated to Kalamazoo Loaves and Fishes, a nonprofit that gives out free food to the community.