So many people are trying to stay active during this isolated time, and what’s better than to contribute not only to the community, but also the environment? There is a small flower garden in the courtyard at Atholton that has been there for years, but as the pandemic grew, there were many changes. Ms. Schwab, a biology teacher and Green Team sponsor at Atholton as well as many other staff members have come together to help clean and preserve the garden. 

This garden was created by the Green Team at Atholton for anyone’s use and has the Green Team’s full support. Due to limited access to school, Ms Schwab is working with the help of the AHS staff. 

“Atholton strives for environmental protection through school and community action, advocacy, and education. With climate change on the rise, Atholton students and staff recognize the necessity of promoting sustainable practices in and around Atholton. The Green Team’s mission is to help foster a green environment by advocating for these sustainable practices, working to maintain them, and participating in community efforts to better our environment.”, which is their stated mission statement. They find many ways to expand the knowledge of the importance of being environmentally friendly. Ms. Schwab believes that it is very important, so she wants to get help from anyone who wants to contribute, which is why she “wanted to make it as open to anyone that wanted to help.” For the past few months, she recruited anyone she could to help clean up the garden, which had not been maintained since the pandemic shut schools down. Teachers and staff members continue to ask if they can help, whether it is to physically participate in cleaning the garden up or donating supplies, such as mulch and shovels or anything specific that may help. Recently, many teachers and staff have donated money for mulch to refresh the garden. Right now, the main focus in the garden is to get the weeds out and replace some of the plants, as well as to clean up the grass. The garden has been wedde and fresh mulch is down, with the help of many staff members. This effort will continue, especially when students, both inside and out the green team, come back to the building.

Currently there are about three to five consistent staff members that are helping with donations and help weeding the garden, though there’s no specific role in what they need to do. It is their choice on what they want to do as long as the work gets done. Ms. Schwab sends “an email to every staff member about volunteering and also leaves garden tools in the staff break room.” Lately, she has been sending emails every two to three days to get more volunteers and donations. After taking a look at some pictures that have been received of the garden, it seems like all the help is really paying off. The main idea is to get people to appreciate nature and just take the time to be outside and surround yourself with something new. 

Between weather conditions and covid regulations, it is not always easy to take the time and get the work done in quick fashion, but it is good to know that people are still willing to make our environment look pleasant and just being able to hang out with others while doing so. 

Posted by Rae Harrison

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