As hospital farm expands, Cox and garden nonprofit aim to improve habits and food supply

CoxHealth and Springfield Community Gardens are working together to cultivate a healthier community.

A recent grant from the Timken Foundation will allow Amanda Belle’s Farm to establish propagation houses and a vegetable packing facility. The farm, located near Cox South, currently supplies employees (and sometimes the cafeteria salad bar) with fresh produce, according to Jesse Baedke, system director of food services with CoxHealth.

But physical health isn’t the only thing the farm is aiming to fortify: Maile Auterson, executive founding director for SCG, sees it as a path toward remedying social ills as well, and for building a better future.

“We are surrounded by persistent poverty, counties that are struggling with food insecurity. To me, that’s a travesty, because my dad grew up and lived to be 100, and he said, ‘During the (Great) Depression, we all ate like kings,’ so I’m like how, why aren’t we eating now?” Auterson

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