FKES student works to feed the hungry through renewable grant
ST. JOHN- For the second summer in a row, Fort Kent Elementary School student Adam Jandreau has grown a garden of fresh vegetables and delivered them to the Greater Fort Kent Ecumenical Food Pantry, which distributes food to local people in need.
The 11-year-old boy has always loved gardening and raising chickens, which prompted his parents, Lisa Morine and Jeff Jandreau, to help him apply for a grant from the foundation "Katie's Krops" in 2013. The foundation's goal is to encourage youth in all 50 states to put an end to hunger by starting their own vegetable gardens and donating the fruits of their labors to local charities. Last year Jandreau received the first installment of the renewable grant in the amount of $450 to purchase seeds and other materials necessary to begin growing his crops. What makes Jandreau's story special, is that he has autism, which was a motivating force in Morine's decision to apply for the grant.
"Through participating in this program he is helping Katie in her goal to end hunger, learning valuable skills through planting and maintaining a garden, and people skills when he does his deliveries. The big social pieces are not for him. This is where it kind of fell into place. He can still be outside and can still do something, but he makes his community connection to keep him known in the community whereas he doesn't want to be social," she said.
This year Jandreau grew lettuce, kale, onions and swiss chard in a 200 square-foot section of the family's greenhouse in St. John Plantation. He also planted tomatoes, which will be ready to go soon, said Morine. On Wednesdays Jandreau delivers the produce to the food pantry.
"I wanted him established in the community. It was always my fear, 'what if something happens to me and nobody knows Adam and doesn't go looking for him'. I didn't want him to become a little hermit in St. John. He'd be more than happy staying right here with his chickens," Morine said.
Greater Fort Kent Ecumenical Food Pantry volunteer coordinator Pete Cannan said, “The young boy does a real fine job. He's very dependable. When he brings his produce, its usually enough to feed four or five families for fresh salad. That young man there should be commended I'm telling you—he's very good for the community,” he said.
Now that his garden is established, Jandreau will receive grant money from Katie's Krops each year until he turns 18 as long as he continues to grow his vegetables and donate them to people in need, Morine said. The hardworking young man is also a budding entrepreneur who sells fresh eggs from his chickens. The eggs can be purchased by calling 834-7497 and asking for Adam. For more information or to donate to the Fort Kent food pantry, call 834-4126.
Support Community Journalism
THIS WEEK'S POLL
- mistakes happen.
2 days 3 hours ago
2 days 8 hours ago
- Winter project.
3 days 9 hours ago
- so sad...
4 days 12 hours ago
4 days 18 hours ago
- the apple never falls too far
1 week 1 day ago
- Fire Dept.
1 week 6 days ago
2 weeks 14 hours ago
- But it's ok for Harleys?
2 weeks 14 hours ago
- Large Trucks
2 weeks 18 hours ago