Fergus Falls Community Garden Committed to Making Region Healthier

Lakes Region Takes Root in Fergus Falls Has a Mission To Provide Healthy Options To Those in Need

FERGUS FALLS, Minn. — Community gardens are popular in our region because they offer people a chance to socialize with others while learning how to garden fresh produce.

One community garden in Fergus Falls is offering that and more.

Five years ago, Jason Bergstrand had the idea of a community garden that would help improve access to healthy food throughout Otter Tail County.

He proposed his idea to the CEO of Lakes Region Healthcare.

“He said, ‘You think we could really pull something like this off?’ and I said, ‘Yeah! All we need is a little bit of land.’ and he said, ‘I think I may have that’,” said Bergstrand, who is the community garden manager.

Now, almost every inch of the land is being used as a garden.

“We literally grow just about everything from A–Z,” Bergstrand added. “From asparagus to zucchini.”

Last year, the garden produced 9,300 pounds of produce.

Once picked and cleaned by the garden volunteers, the food is distributed to Fergus Falls, Battle Lake, and Pelican Rapids food banks as well as WIC programs and the Salvation Army throughout Otter Tail County.

Not only are they giving underprivileged families food, they’re providing them with a healthier option.

“Access to affordable fresh fruits and vegetables was a barrier to people’s health, especially to the under-served,” said Katie Johnson, the VP of Marketing and Communications at Lakes Region Healthcare.

“If we can provide more fresh fruits and vegetables as an opportunity for them to pick when they go to the food shelf, we know that they are going to be able to have a healthy option and that will then improve their wellness,” said Bergstrand.

Lakes Region Healthcare said the garden could help prevent sickness in their community.

“Health care today isn’t just about helping people when they’re sick,” said Johnson. “It’s helping them to stay well and reach their optimum wellness wherever they are in that.”

More information about Lakes Region Takes Root can be found by clicking here.


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