Albany County struggles more than others in the state with hunger and access to healthy food. That’s why a group of AmeriCorps volunteers came to Laramie, to help grow vegetables and deliver them to food banks and soup kitchens in the community. Haley Ammons grew up in Michigan and is considering the idea of pursuing a career working with nonprofits. She said planting crops and harvesting produce for the organization Feeding Laramie Valley is helping her figure that out.
“Americorps’ official mission is to strengthen community and help develop leaders,” said Ammons. “So with Feeding Laramie Valley here, the big job within the community is they want to provide food security. That’s a big need.”
Americorps pays the eight volunteers’ room and board and covers a year’s worth of college tuition equivalent to a Pell grant.
Barron Allison grew up in North Carolina and is considering a career in the environment. He said his eight-person team ended up in Wyoming because AmeriCorps wanted to put a committed and efficient team on the job of helping Laramie produce locally grown food to feed those in need. It’s the first team to come to Wyoming since Americorps recently added the state to its southwest region.
“Because this project is so special, because we’re the first team here, so they really wanted to send a team that has had high performance in the past and has shown a great outcome. So they pulled us out and said, go. Go to Wyoming!”
The team will stay through the harvest season and help out with the Higher Ground Fair in September.