Our Youth

New Organic Garden at TMLA

Service Homeroom Students at The Mary Louis Academy plant different vegetables at the school’s organic garden.

In Jamaica Estates, students from The Mary Louis Academy Service Homeroom Initiative have opened new organic garden. Located on the academy’s bucolic campus – just behind the convent – the project features two 40-square-foot box gardens. The students planted various vegetables such as beets, carrots, spinach and nasturtium.

Students have been caring for their spouts using natural fertilizer and compost. Garden World donated all of the materials, from the shovels to the dirt. The lumber for the boxes was a gift from Ted Badea, Inc.

Under the direction of Allyson Farley Gutierrez, a member of the TMLA English department, the Service Homeroom Initiative members take part in the Voice Leadership Program. This program aims to help each student find her voice: to command respect for herself and others, champion justice and become a leader.

The Voice curriculum addresses issues including self-image, media-representation, health, social justice and environmental concerns, girls’ education, women in government, women in business and political efficacy. The curriculum focuses on building the foundations for confident, informed participation in any manner of discourse, including class presentations, college or job interviews, mediation and advocacy.