Man Hours Invested
Lettuce Heads Harvested
Food Insecure Households Served
THE AQUAPONIC GARDEN
The garden is housed in a 1,500sf commercial grade greenhouse constructed of galvanized steel frame with polycarbonate side walls and wrapped in a 6 mm solar wrap (bubble wrap) polyethylene material. The greenhouse is designed to operate year round with a fully automated heating and cooling system. The aquaponic system is a 5,000 gallon closed loop ecosystem consisting of two fish tanks that are home to 300 Tilapia. There’s approximately 750sf of floating grow beds housing about 3,600 lettuce and leafy green plants of different varieties, 400 of which are harvested on a weekly basis. In addition, there is a rock media grow bed and grow towers providing a variety of harvestable herbs and seasonal vegetables. The fish waste is converted by naturally occurring water born bacteria into vital nutrients that are absorbed by the plants which in turn clean the water for recirculation back into the fish tank. This type of system uses approximately 20% of the water used in traditional soil based gardens.
- We learned that there are over 82,000 people in our region who are food insecure; meaning that they have day-to-day food struggles and even bigger struggles when it comes to eating healthy.
- Over 23% of all children living in our county live in food insecure households and these unhealthy eating habits has resulted in a 24% higher obesity rate for children living below the poverty rate.
- Over 450 of these struggling families visit our campus each and every month utilizing the services of the Fresh Start Center Food Pantry. Without healthy food options most of these families are destined to stay stuck in a vicious poverty cycle of choosing between hunger and inexpensive heavily processed foods which contribute to their poor health and even poorer outlook on life.
Providing fresh produce to families in need.
Inspiring and uniting our surrounding community.
Empowering others through our monthly Garden Market.
Making a difference globally.
Colorado Springs, CO 80923