Hey! Emily here. I am currently in the third week of my summer internship at Keep Growing Detroit (KGD), a gardening organization whose mission is to promote a food sovereign Detroit — that is, a Detroit where the majority of fruits and vegetables consumed by Detroiters are grown within the city limits.
This is my second time working with KGD; my first work experience was during the University of Michigan’s Semester in Detroit program, which I participated in during the Fall of 2017. During my first internship, I learned more than I ever could have expected. My primary roles were facilitating volunteer crews on the KGD farm, drafting a farm food safety plan for the organization, and supporting staff on citywide programs and events. I found myself enjoying the organization’s work flow and atmosphere, and I knew I wanted to return to KGD in the future. After months of conversing with one of KGD’s co-directors and securing University funding, my summer internship fell right into place.
This summer I’ll be building upon some of the work I began in the fall, as well as taking on new roles entirely. This is a time of transition for KGD, as they are currently in the process of relocating the farm. I’m very excited to be a part of this transition. Soon, I’ll begin my role as a staff for KGD’s Summer Youth Apprentice program, where I’ll be supervising and teaching farm skills to a group of 16 youth for 6 weeks. I am also looking forward to working at Eastern Market (Detroit’s largest farmer’s market) twice a week, and facilitating volunteer crews 1-2 times a week, as well. I am thrilled to have two wonderful supervisors who have already proven to be a great support system for me at KGD.
My goals for the summer are to continue building relationships with folks throughout Detroit’s urban agriculture community, strengthen my farm skills, and facilitate a meaningful work experience for the KGD youth. The youth program starts up on Monday, and I couldn’t be more excited!