The Grow Cook Eat (GCE) program graduated its second class on Dec. 17, 2013. 15 individuals completed the program and celebrated their accomplishments with dinner the Sherwood Hotel with staff and mentors. This Chenango United Way funded program was designed to give participants an integrated and holistic program so that the whole experience would be greater than the sum of its parts.
Each participant was provided with a community garden plot, container garden or support for gardening in their own yard. Each participant was paired with a Master Gardener Volunteer gardening mentor. Requirements for graduation included taking five gardening classes, six Eat Smart New York (ESNY) cooking and nutrition classes, three food preservation classes, three YMCA physical fitness classes, personal goal setting and evaluation sessions, and completing 10 hours of volunteer work in the community, including the Chenango United Way Day of Caring event.