Today's lesson: kindness can be grown

Published: Sep. 22, 2017 at 2:39 PM AKDT
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Outside a school in Anchorage a hand craved sign hangs above 10 rows of raised bed gardens. Each bed is filled with black dirt, worms raised at the school, plus potatoes and carrots stuffed tightly together.

"I bet there's more in here," Chris Opitz the principal at Huffman Elementary school told students as he used a shovel to dig deeper into the dirt searching for potatoes the size of a man's hand. Dozens of kindergarten students pushed past each other, eager to grab a potato or find a worms.

For the past several months the students at Huffman along with volunteers have grown vegetables, which were harvested on Friday. The produce will be donated to Beans Cafe, which has been a tradition at the school since 2004. Last year's donation was more than 1,600 pounds.

Food in Alaska can be expensive. And, usually it is the most underprivileged that can't afford fresh vegetables or fruit. Lisa Sauder the executive director at Beans stood nearby as the students worked. Her excitement was palpable.

"This is my favorite day of the year," Sauder said while she took photos of the students.

As a fog drifted over the gardens it began to drizzle. Large white buckets quickly overflowed with potatoes, which Opitz then loaded onto his truck to take to Beans.

"This is really good," kindergarten Henry Rosier said, "because all these homeless people can cont on getting a good meal."