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School Garden Continues To Grow Thanks To Donors

A garden program for the Special Day Classes at Dublin High recently got some much-needed financial support.

It's the generosity of others that has made it possible for a garden program for the Special Day Classes at to flourish.

Teacher Peter Dragula says the garden means a lot to his students, who range in age from 14 to 22 years old. 

"I wanted them to have the opportunity to work," said Dragula, whose students plant, water and use compost to keep the garden growing.

The garden gives students the ability to increase their motor skills and socialization skills.

But as is the case with any school project, the project needed funding to pay for the soil, tools, seeds, fertilizer and more. That's when Dragula turned to a national website called Donors Choose. The site began in 2000 as a way for people to "connect with classrooms who need materials."

On the website, Dragula described the importance of the garden to his students.

"They are moderate/ severely disabled and require consistent practice and opportunity to learn work/socialization routines that can possibly lead them to earn a chance of working on their own or in a supported environment."

Donors can give any amount to a project that inspires them. Dragula's desription of the garden and its importance paid off. Eight donors, including Chevron, donated a total of $2,044.

Dragula said both he and his students are grateful.

The students are currently growing lettuce, brocoli, cabbage and strawberries, to name just a few. They work on the project on a daily basis, making sure the garden is watered and weeded.

"This environment calms them down. It allows them to be more independent," said Dragula.

The benefits go beyond Dragula's classroom. The food grown in the garden benefits the school's cooking program, as well. A win-win situation for all involved in Dragula's garden program.

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