This program spent the first half of the FY (program not approved until August) purchasing equipment and supplies, developing programming plans and preparing for the Spring 2020 planning to ramp up the programming. COVID-19 hit in March right before planting season causing a halt to the program due to travel restrictions, loss of the inmate population, school closings and limited gathering. At the end of FY20 supplies were delivered to the farm and market beds were started with limited volunteers.
No numbers are being reported in this fiscal year. This has been an extremly difficult year for the program. The program relies on school trips for the students to attend and participate in educational programs. Covid has prevented the release of inmates to the farm which are also a crucial part of youth programming. With the lifting of the Covid restrictions inmates are now returning to the Southern MD program and will be able to be transferred to the Caroline County program in the Fall. With students returning to in person school we look forward to the program being fully operational in the Fall of FY22. Several volunteers including youth (14), have worked at planting and harvesting through the spring and summer FY21/FY22 at the farm.