Oxbow welcomes a new AmeriCorps service member to the Education Team!

In an innovative partnership program spearheaded by CommonThreads in Bellingham, Oxbow is part of a state-wide food educators Mega Team for the second time in a row. (You can read more history about the state-wide partnership here!)

Last year, our AmeriCorps service member Caroline served nearly 1800 students through field trips, in-class lessons, and school partnerships. She also conducted a survey with around 200 students which assessed students’ healthy eating behaviors, vegetable & fruit preferences, and gardening/cooking skills. Caroline worked with our Frank Wagner Elementary School partnership to build a school garden and work with students and teachers to utilize and support the new space. She built new lesson plans, farmed, and led five summer camp groups, what a year!!

Networking with and learning from the Mega Team partners, as well as hosting an AmeriCorps member, brought so much to our team – so we’re doing it again!

Welcome to Ben Mardis!

Raised on the east coast, Ben has been living in the Pacific Northwest for the past four years.  Ben is an experienced outdoor educator, avid naturalist, lover of gardening, and practicing permaculturist. After serving in the U.S. Navy, he spent three years volunteering on farms around the country through World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms (WWOOF) where he became obsessed with food systems and sustainability. Ben has certificates in wilderness skills education and ecology, animal tracking, and permaculture design obtained during his studies at Alderleaf Wilderness College. Ben is excited to do meaningful work in his community and believes connecting the younger generations’ to their food and nature will help them provide positive solutions for the future of our planet.

Ben will be bringing so much knowledge and passion to the Kids’ Farm and our school garden at Frank Wagner, and is excited to work with students and communities to connect people to their food and environment.