Boots 2 Roots PDX

The Boots 2 Roots PDX pilot program engages Veterans in agriculture through two complementary strategies: garden-based therapeutic horticulture and farm-based training in agriculture and aquaponics. Both approaches foster physical, emotional, cognitive, and social benefits among Veterans in alignment with the Veterans Affairs approach to Whole Health by improving diet, exercise, and social connections. The program provides therapeutic hands-on community engagement opportunities that foster health and wellness while also preparing Veterans for meaningful vocational opportunities in the agriculture and horticulture industry.

Our crew out preparing our rows at our Corbett Farm. Getting in the dirt is Therapy 101.
Some of our crew at the Portland VA after having a Rose Pruning 101 with our program's horticulturalist.

Our partnership with the VA Whole Health is underway. We kicked off our official season at the beginning of February. We successfully went through the Master Gardener Training for the Portland Metro Area. The farmers are readying the farm in Corbett and the gardeners are seeding plants to give away at events coming up at the VA in Portland and in Vancouver, WA. Both groups meet regularly since the ultimate goal of this program is to grow food for community and create spaces that are both productive and therapeutic. As a pilot program we are in uncharted territory moving along side the VA, but as farmers we have that familiar excitement for this time of year. Crop planning, preparing for the season, and imagining what is to come...and what will come. Produce to feed community.

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In partnership with Whole Health for Life and VA FARMS