As the summer season reaches peak abundance it is our pleasure to welcome Sam Ruark onto the staff at the Organic Growers School. Sam will play two roles here at OGS, as developer and manager our new Get Growing program and as the coordinator of the Spring Conference Speaker program. These two opportunities will be nourished by Sam’s experience as a conference organizer, sustainability programs developer, educator, permaculture designer, partnership creator, and homesteader.
One of the most exciting evolutions taking place at Organic Growers School is the creation of a home garden support program. OGS is developing “Get Growing” to increase the number of people who are successfully growing food organically on a home scale in WNC.
It is our goal to inspire the average person towards personal confidence through education, one-on-one support, and delivering the systems that can help people start or expand their gardens. We will be working to radically change the public image of small-scale agriculture in order to demystify the role of food & growing in our lives. We want to help people get excited and build skill in food growing, processing, and preparation in order to help them build a sense of confidence and an increase their food security.
“Get Growing will not only offer coaching and design services for your home garden. You will be able to pick up the phone or send an email to order raised beds, compost, seeds, fruit trees, and chickens and have them all delivered to your home…Transforming your lawn into a food producing paradise like you’ve always wanted,” said Sam.
We will call upon the support and expertise of partners from local small business, non-profits, permaculture designers, and landscape contractors, to develop and deliver products and services to home growers.
The ultimate outcome is an empowered population, successfully growing organically on a home- and community-garden scale, who are financially and nutritionally resourced, ready to take a seat at the political table and use their voice to advocate for more equitable, sustainable and accessible food systems and a vibrant, engaged community.
Addressing the food crisis is going to take all of us. And we must start now. To create strengthened communities, reclaim food sovereignty (the eaters make the decisions about the food life cycle), and prepare for global energy peaks, and climate change, we must inspire, encourage, educate, and support the average person to grow food.
Sam will also be recruiting creative, engaging, experienced speakers for the OGS Spring Conference who will share their insight, secrets and expertise of how to grow and live organically. The conference will honor its 22 years of delivering practical wisdom for the garden, farm and homestead while adding a few delightful surprises to make it even more educational, engaging, and fun.
Sam has 17 years experience working in the field of sustainability for local governments, non-profits, and small businesses. Most recently he was Energy & Sustainability Coordinator for Sonoma County, CA, working primarily on clean energy projects and programs. He served as Educational Programming Director for Seven-Star Events for several years and was a Sustainability Planner for Marin County, CA as well. He has been gardening for 10+ years, is a certified Permaculture Designer, tends bees, ferments fruits, herbs and honey, and spends his free time on mountain trails, swimming in waterfalls, and becoming more educated about how to live simply, build soil, grow plants, and honor the wild. He and his wife Lena are evolving and tending a 1.5 acre homestead in Candler, NC.
For more information on Get Growing or the Spring Conference program you may contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Organic Growers School is a non-profit organization providing organic education since 1993. Our mission is to inspire, educate, and support people in our region to farm, garden, and live organically.