service learning

Learning to Make a Difference by Impacting Hunger in Loudoun County


Over the last two months the Morven Park education team has been honored to work with a group of eighth grade students from Trailside Middle School to create a real impact on our shared community through a service learning project.  These 145 inspiring young leaders participated in our Good Citizenship Project – a unique project-based learning experience that brings students outside of their classrooms and into the community to identify, learn about, and address local issues.

The students were split into two groups, each one focused on a pressing yet often unseen issue in our region – hunger and habitat loss.  Through the projects, students learned ways to find out about what’s going on in their communities and how they can do something to help.  They learned to ask questions, challenge assumptions and take a stand on how we as a community can impact these issues.



In this post we look at the project that dealt with hunger (learn more about the habitat loss project here).  These students pulled on their gardening gloves and got to work planting and harvesting fresh produce that was donated to Loudoun Interfaith Relief.  The students worked in teams and were responsible for at least one raised garden bed at Morven Park.  They were mentored by an amazing team of volunteers – from the Loudoun County Master Gardeners, Extension Office, Loudoun Veg, and home gardeners – who showed them the ropes on how to garden.

The students first planted in April after learning how to plan out a garden bed to maximize the harvest and shelf-life of the veggies.  In early June the students returned to do an initial harvest, coming up with 132 pounds of fresh veggies!  As our weather continues to warm, their hard work will potentially produce another 200 pounds of radishes, lettuces, kale, turnips, beets and parsnips that will go to those in need.  Check out the video below from Loudoun Interfaith Relief to learn more about the outcome of this project and how it helped our community thrive!



The teams wrapped up their projects by creating PSAs and articles to share their work and motivate others to do one thing – get involved!  Listed below are links to their final products.  Take a look and be inspired!


Team 1

Team 2

Team 3

Team 4

Team 5

Team 6

Team 7

Team 8

Team 9

Team 10

Team 11

Team 12

Team 13

Team 14


To learn more about our civic impact projects and learning opportunities, visit our programs page.

Morven Park is a nonprofit that relies on donations from friends like you. All donations directly fund our work in historic preservation, our world-class equestrian center, youth sports, and our unique civics education programming. Your donation is an investment in Morven Park’s future, ensuring that generations to come will enjoy this vital public resource. Please donate today at   

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *