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Kirk to serve as community garden coordinator

Kirk to serve as community garden coordinator


AmeriCorps VISTA members have been serving the community for 10 years. While serving, members focus on six key areas - disaster services, economic opportunity, education, environmental stewardship, healthy futures and veterans and military families.


One such AmeriCorps VISTA member proudly serving the community is Anneke Kirk. After serving four years as an AmeriCorps member, she transitioned into the AmeriCorps VISTA program as the community garden coordinator. Kirk’s primary focus is building healthy futures with an emphasis on food security and program sustainability.


“I joined VISTA because I love this community and want to be part of it. I want to contribute and build upon the community where I live,” Kirk says.


AmeriCorps VISTA service is an amazing adventure and a fulfilling experience as individuals give back to their neighbors, community and country.


The Waynesville Community Garden, located next to the Waynesville Sixth Grade Center, was established as part of the food security initiative. Kirk coordinates open shed days, where garden patrons are able to use the garden’s tools, seeds, mulch, soil and other resources. The garden offers handicap accessible garden plots as well as more than 100 additional plots to the community for free. Use of the garden is free to the community, but registration is required.


This year, Kirk is focused on increasing program efficiency. She is instrumental in maintaining a partnership with the Pulaski County Missouri Master Gardener Extension Program, streamlining communication and implementing programs that support registered gardeners.


Kirk says, “The highlight of my service, so far, is working with the community, extending my network and service learning. Though it has its challenges, serving as the community garden coordinator is a great experience. My goal for the program is to expand and implement programs such as outdoor classrooms for students to get more involved.” 


As an AmeriCorps member in the Waynesville R-VI School District, Kirk tutored elementary students and organized after school student activities.


Courtney Long, director of community resources and grant management, said that Kirk’s creativity, efficiency and love of nature are just a few attributes that make her a great service member. “We are excited for Anneke to continue to work on our Community Garden and look forward to involving more students in the garden as well as expanding opportunities for those with food insecurities to participate in, and benefit from the garden,” Long said.




The Community Resource Office (CRO), under the direction of Courtney Long, is a grant-supported department of the Waynesville R-VI School District that manages district volunteers, AmeriCorps school tutors, Club TIGER afterschool program, Snack in a Pack Program, college and career readiness, service learning, and more. These programs are made possible by grants from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) and Army Youth Programs in Your Neighborhood (AYPYN). For more information about the CRO Programs or how to get involved, contact (573) 842-2250 or

 "Issued December 3, 2018"