The Big Red Barn Retreat enters into a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to support a Veterans community garden
The Big Red Barn Retreat is honored to receive their first Federal cooperative agreement of $36,775 from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to create a community garden. The garden will support outreach to Veterans and provide an innovative educational opportunity and much needed regulation practice for those Veterans who are struggling. Gardening is inherently therapeutic in nature as it offers our Nation’s heroes an opportunity to spend time outdoors, connect with other Veterans, relieve stress, and keep their mind engaged and their bodies active. Furthermore, fruits and vegetables harvested from the garden will supplement home food costs, as many Veterans are on a fixed, and lower income.
Moreover, the garden will support other programs currently being offered at the Big Red Barn Retreat including the flagship program, Warrior PATHH (Progressive, Alternative Training for Helping Heroes). The garden will serve as both a source of fresh, healthy ingredients for the meals served during the 7-day, in-resident PATHH initiation, as well as be incorporated into the “food as medicine” training module that is taught during initiation. In addition, the garden will provide fresh ingredients for the monthly Farm To Table Cooking class facilitated by resident Chef and Warrior PATHH Guide, Jason Dersch.
The garden will be open year-round and help those Veterans who are in need of respite in a natural setting and looking to connect with other Veterans.
“This is money well spent towards helping win the battle within the minds of so many of our Veterans who are struggling with the invisible wounds of war.” says David Williams, the Executive Director of the Big Red Barn Retreat. “This grant allows the Big Red Barn Retreat to have its own modern day ‘Victory Garden’ to help feed and fuel our war against Post Traumatic Stress.”
To learn more about the Big Red Barn Retreat Garden and planned gardening volunteer events, please visit the Big Red Barn Retreat website at www.thebigredbarnretreat.org/veterans-gardening.
The Big Red Barn Retreat
The Big Red Barn Retreat (BRBR) is a 501(c)(3) located in Blythewood, South Carolina that provides free nonclinical services, programs, and training, including Warrior PATHH, to Veterans, Active-duty service members, and First Responders struggling with military and combat-related stress. Established in 2014, the BRBR helps more than 2,500 military personnel annually. All services provided at the BRBR are funded through grants and private donations. For more information or to donate, please visit www.thebigredbarnretreat.org/donate