Rodale Institute has gifted cold weather organic vegetable crops to the Hershey Community Garden to be planted, harvested, and donated to local organizations.
Founded by Hershey Impact—a partnership between The Hershey Company, Milton Hershey School, Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, Hershey Entertainment & Resorts Company, and The M.S. Hershey Foundation—the Hershey Community Garden (HCG) serves multiple purposes including growing food for those in need, providing a community garden, and supplying hands-on educational training.
Located on the campus of Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, a group of medical students, named Food As Medicine, planted the donated cold weather vegetables in their plot. Last year, the group was able to donate between 600-700lbs of produce to workers at the Penn National Race Course horse stables and Manna Food Pantry. They hope to do the same this year.
The Food As Medicine group will be expanding the garden this year and creating opportunities for cancer patients to do sustainable gardening using the plants donated by the Institute. Consistent with Rodale Institute’s mission, the group will assess whether growing organic produce in healthy soil can result in better psychosocial health outcomes while improving microbiome health.