Rural teens share their farm stories with urban youth

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Acme High School students Monique Uittenbogerd and Maria Penner shared a story last week.   The story of growing up on farms in Kneehill County, having a hand in raising livestock and growing crops, which in turn help feed the world.

Their audience, over 100 elementary student students from three schools in Calgary, heard where their food comes from, how the flour that is a key ingredient in so many of the foods they enjoy comes from wheat.  Wheat that is grown in fields across the country and can be found on farms just outside their city.  Farms like the ones Monique and Maria are from.

Maria says it was a great experience to tell the kids about her life.

“Many of the elementary students have never stepped foot on a farm let alone had a farmer in the classroom.  It was an exciting day of learning about the hard work that is required to produce grains and oilseeds for consumers in Alberta and across the world,” says Penner.

A thought that is echoed Monique.

“Today was important because as rural student we have the chance to experience the city but it’s much harder for urban children to get out and experience the farm.  There are children that don’t know where their food comes from and it’s important for us to share this knowledge,” said Uittenbogerd.

One of the people helping to make the connection between rural teens and urban kids is Acme High School Career Connection Project Coordinator Cathy Price.

Price says this was a great day of agriculture education and advocacy.

“The staff and students we met today have a new appreciation for this incredible industry and community that is agriculture,” says Price.

The students in attendance are from Dr. E.W. Coffin, Colonel Sanders and Cambrian Heights and are all part of the Little Green Thumbs program, which is supported by Ag For Life.

CEO Luree Williamson says having Maria and Monique made for an engaging and interactive day.

“It was delightful to watch the future of agriculture share their passion with future consumers, and maybe even a few of the industry’s future,” says Williamson.

Little Green Thumbs reaches over 5,000 students across the province.