By Christy Ulmet
By Christy Ulmet
Strawberries, mint, rye, clover and tomatoes are growing on top of the chicken coop on campus as one of the Urban Farm’s latest projects.
The living roof was planted in June of 2015 to both provide insulation to the coop and another place to grow fruits and vegetables.
The Trevecca Urban Farm, which includes 1.5 acres of gardens with an estimated 100 different species of plants, around 65 animals, beehives, chick coops and an aquaponics system, is an on-campus farm operated by the Center for Social Justice as a learning lab for the Center’s environmental justice program.
Every time humans build new buildings or parking garages, good soil is being covered up. Living roofs are one way that people are able to enjoy new buildings, as well as still have space to grow vegetation. The buildings help raise the growing areas closer to the sky, said Jason Adkins, environmental projects coordinator and farm operator.
They also help prevent flooding in urbanized areas because the rainwater can be soaked up by the soil, rather than treated as runoff into streams and rivers. The evaporation of the rainwater is what helps cool the buildings. Living roofs also help prolong the life of the roof, because they prevent UV rays from degrading the quality of the roofing.
Living roofs, also green roofs and heat islands, have become more popular in the United States since the market collapse because of their ability to cut heating and cooling costs, according to a report released by the Environmental Protection Agency. One of the more popular local projects with a green roof is on top of the new Nashville Music City Center a few blocks down the road from Trevecca.
Adkins chose what’s called the “Carpet Sandwich” approach for the living roof. One of the largest sources of landfills is used carpet. This is one way that the carpet can be reused, he said.
A piece of carpet is placed on top of the roof decking, followed by pond lining to help prevent flooding, and then another piece of carpet, which keeps branches or roots from destroying the lining from the top side down. Six inches of soil, used for growing vegetation, is added to the top layer. The soil on this living roof came from the compost sifted from the yard around it.
The project cost about $200, because the only new supplies needed were the pond liner and some screws; everything else came from recycled or composted material. And the roof is capable of paying for itself, Adkins said.
“We’re building a farm to teach and inspire people to take care of the earth, and grow good food and take care of one another. Its value really consists in how people take what they learn and put it into practice,” he said.
The living roof is one of the steps the Urban Farm has taken towards conservation. Adkins has overseen other sustainability projects on campus including: an aquaponics system to help water plants while providing a place for tilapia to live and a compost pile made up of scraps from the cafeteria and the farm.
Adkins said that this project was mainly meant to be an addition to the learning lab aspect of the farm. In the future, he noted that he’d love to see more living roofs being used around campus to provide additional insulation and growing space.
By Bailey Basham
Nearly 100 ballerinas will be on Trevecca’s campus this weekend.
The J.V. Morsch Center for Social Justice will host “The Art of Justice: Using Creativity to Change the World,” a weekend-long celebration to highlight youth organizations in Nashville who use art to do social justice in youth communities.
The keynote event will be the Rejoice School of Ballet spring recital.
Among the other youth art organizations are Courage Unmasked, Harvest Hands Humphrey Street Coffee Company, local artists and a local community theatre company. These organizations will have booths set up to give out information about their organizations.
“I see many individuals who use different forms of the arts, whether it’s therapeutic writing, painting, or ballet. People use creativity to address social issues,” said Iris Gordon, Nashville business management consultant and adjunct professor in the J.V. Morsch Center for Social Justice. “I don’t think many people think about the power of creativity, so the goal of the event is to put that on display, heighten the awareness of what is being accomplished, and spark new ideas and interests in how people can utilize their creativity to also address or manage social issues.”
Rejoice School of Ballet is a non-profit dance school in East Nashville. The school, celebrating its 15th anniversary this year, serves nearly 100 dancers a year from diverse backgrounds. All students pay incomer-based fees for training, dance wear, and costumes.
The goal of Rejoice is to serve dancers from diverse backgrounds by hiring professional faculty to teach students who otherwise wouldn’t have access to quality ballet training, said Patricia Cross, executive director of Rejoice.
Rejoice is a client of The Neighborhood Empowerment Program, which is an initiative of the Center for Social Justice that seeks to equip and empower local nonprofits to maximize their work in serving our neighbors, said Jamie Casler, director of the J.V. Morsch Center of Social Justice.
Gordon has been working with Rejoice for about a year through the NEP. She consults with the board of directors, sets up committees and counsels Cross on business methods and efficiency.
“I have seen real impact on how businesses can address social injustices that exist in our world and have a positive effect just in restoring people to wholeness- both in individuals and the community and at large,” said Gordon.
She has energized the board members to do great work to support and promote Rejoice, said Cross.
“Trevecca sends Iris out in the community to walk alongside nonprofits who otherwise couldn’t afford that sort of help, and to have someone with her expertise and knowledge is an amazing gift,” said Cross. “Iris has brought in other local ministries that are using art to promote social justice, so we feel the event is going to be a great way to open people’s eyes to the importance of the arts and promoting social justice in the community.”
The event is open to all Trevecca students, faculty and staff, and neighboring community members.
“It would really serve as a positive exposure on how different arts are being used to empower and address social injustice and could broaden a student’s perspective on what they might be able to do to use their creativity to help address social issues as well,” said Gordon.
“The Art of Justice” will be on May 2 at 6:30 p.m. and on May 3 at 3 p.m. in Boone Business Building. Tickets are $8 and may be purchased here.
By Griffin Dunn
More than 100 people attended the first annual Trevecca Urban Farm Barn Dance this weekend.
The dance was the first fundraiser held in the new barn on campus. The $5 entry fee was used to raise funds for future farm projects, said Jason Adkins, farm manager.
This video was originally posted on the website for the TrevEchoes, the student-run newspaper of Trevecca Nazarene University.
By Montgomery Sparrow
Carlson Grae is finding the Trevecca Urban Farm to be a great place to practice his faith while he’s earning his master’s degree in religion.
Grae, the part-time farm hand, joined the staff last fall.
He provides assistance to Jason Adkins, Trevecca’s environmental projects coordinator, with general activity on Trevecca’s Urban Farm and who also is a creative force to create programs to enlist more volunteers.
“I don’t know how I would run the farm without him. He is a creative thinker, a heavy lifter, and a hard worker.” Adkins said. “To be a farmer, you have to be a total person, and Carlson is one of those total people that you hope to come along.” Read the rest of this entry »
By Montgomery Sparrow
Local hand-made farm products are becoming increasingly available from the Trevecca Urban Farm.
The farm, mostly used as a lab for teaching environmental justice and farming practices, is making and selling more products thanks to a new part-time farmhand. Read the rest of this entry »
By Christy Ulmet
Last fall, five Trevecca students were given the task of creating a clean water project idea. The team, led by Stephens Hiland, senior communication studies major, prepared a model for a fundraiser, which will support Nazarene Compassionate Ministries’ Global Clean Water Fund.
Every Nazarene university and college was able to submit an entry for the project, but Trevecca’s group ended up winning, which gave them the funding needed for the school’s idea, which they titled “Drop by Drop.” Read the rest of this entry »
Trevecca President Dan Boone wants the church to not be afraid to talk to about human sexuality, and his latest book is an effort to help the conversation.
Human Sexuality: A Primer for Christians, will hit the stands next month.