Helping to Feed Others: One Cabbage At A Time
Love Through A Child's Heart Files
My goal is to be able to stop childhood hunger, to be able to donate food to my local soup kitchens, to help feed those people that have to go there every day.
Katie Stagliano’s story begins in 2008, when she was only nine years old. Her school engaged their students in a nationwide gardening incentive, where the students were given cabbage seedlings donated by Bonnie Plants 3rd Grade Cabbage Program to grow at home. Katie nurtured her cabbage seedlings as instructed, without the help of special soils or gardening products. This may sound like a story out of a child's fairytale book, but to her surprise the cabbage began to grow into a magnificent 40-pound cabbage.
It only takes a seedling! -Katie Stagliano
Not actually knowing what to do with her new "Green Giant" headed friend, her mother lent a hand by contacting the Fields to Families, a non-profit food organization located in Charleston, South Carolina, who told her about a local soup kitchen. So Katie and her mother embarked upon their journey and delivered the newly harvested vegetable to help those who were in need. The local soup kitchen volunteers fed over 275 people with this one head of cabbage. As Katie explains in a YouTube video produced by Disney Parks, "This cabbage was special and I wanted to do something special with it. My Dad had always told us that we were very lucky to have food on the table every day, some people have to go to soup kitchens to be feed, because they don't have food on their table every night."
What happens next is not as mysterious as the yielding of the titanic size cabbage, but just as amazing. Katie was so inspired with the results of the many people who were fed by one cabbage, she came up with an idea that motivated her friends and fellow students to start a garden at their school, who in turn donated a plot of land the size of a football field.
The vegetables harvested through this school garden are used for the students, and the rest is donated to others. According to a CNN video interview, Katie helped a local homeless shelter which houses 14 child residents begin a garden to help replenish vegetables for their own use, but this cabbage tale doesn't end here. Katie, now eleven years of age (in 2010), manages six gardens locally with the help of volunteers.
My hope is that Katie's Krops will inspire lots of
others to help in the fight against hunger.
Even though Katie stays busy gardening, you can also find her tending to Katie's Krops at www.katieskrops.com. Here you will find a bushel full of kid's gardening tips, photographs of her gardens, and ways you can help Katie's wish list or by making monetary donations. A book entitled Katie's Cabbage, written by Katie Stagliano, is due for release soon, and includes colorful illustrations and tips on how kids can start their own vegetable gardens. (*As of May 2012, Katie's book has been completed and is in need of a publisher. Please click here for more information.)
On May 4, 2010, Walt Disney World Resorts celebrated Katie’s
volunteerism by inviting her and her family to Walt Disney World.
A big "High-Five" to you Katie!
Finding Love Through A Child's Heart,
- Heather, Director of Children's Awareness
To learn more about Katie's Krops, how you can donate or start your own community garden click here.
Articles of Interest: [Note*All links have been updated as of May, 2012.]
A Growing Inspiration: Katie Stagliano and Her Dream of 'No Hungry Children' February 25, 2009, by Lindsey Salmon
South Carolina Girl Finds Goodness in Gardening, August 2, 2011 by Sandy Summers
Katies Krops- A Greenhouse to Feed the Needy, Janurary 1, 2012, by Katie Stagliano
© Heather Nutt, 2010, 2011, 2012 Revised. All Rights Reserved. No Reproduction without Permission from Author(s).
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