A testament to the influential nature of educational and community gardening programs for teens
Part engaging conversation, part comprehensive fieldwork, Growing a Life demonstrates just how influential educational and community gardening programs can be for young teens. Follow author Ill ne Pevec as she travels from rural Colorado to inner city New York, agrarian New Mexico to Oakland, California, in order to study youth gardening and the benefits it contributes to at-risk teen lives. Extensive research, supplemented by beautifully candid interviews with students, illustrate the life altering physical and mental benefits that mentored gardening programs can provide. Giving readers the opportunity to examine the largely unexplored topic of urban gardening, the programs discussed present models for future educational and community based gardens. Each destination brings with it an abundance of programs geared toward educating teens by giving them the tools they will need in order to have fruitful futures. With an emphasis on positive psychology, Growing a Life delves into the minds of underprivileged teens and what gardening means to them.
About the Author
Dr. Illene Pevec, PhD., is a researcher for the Children, Youth and Environments Center for Research and Design, University of Colorado Boulder, as well as program director for Fat City Farmers, a local food education program in Basalt, Colorado. She is best known for her work in community youth gardens, which began in 1998 during graduate studies at the University of British Columbia. Pevec helped develop a large, award-winning community garden at a Vancouver elementary school. Dr. Pevec also brought her research with youth gardening to her native country of Brazil, where she founded A Child's Garden of Peace in Sao Borja, Rio Grande do Sul, a series of community gardens for youth of all ages, as well as adult volunteers. She produced a documentary by the same name, A Child's Garden of Peace about her work in Brazil, which toured international festivals from 2005-2006 and appeared on PBS's Natural Heroes series. During doctorate work at the University of Colorado, she helped develop the Roaring Fork High School and Yampah Mountain High School Gardens. Pevec has published numerous scholarly papers as well as popular articles, including for Green Teacher Magazine. She frequently lectures at conferences, such as the American Horticultural Society's annual National Children & Youth Garden Symposium, and was keynote presenter for the Evergreen Canada School Garden Conference. Growing a Life is Dr. Pevec's first book.