Girl Planting seeds

Youth Are Flipping an Abandoned North Carolina Prison into a Sustainable Farm

On a crisp, windy day in March, 17-year-old Norman Garcia-Lopez tries to coax a donkey and a herd of 14 sheep from a fenced yard out to open pasture. “Come on, Miss Easter,” he says, holding a shallow bowl of food under the donkey’s nose. She steps through the door in the chain-link fence, and her fleecy charges follow soon after, bleating. Garcia-Lopez isn’t on a typical farm. Surrounded by tall fences and razor wire, he and the group of high-school-aged young men affiliated with the nonprofit Growing Change are farming in an abandoned prison in rural Wagram, North Carolina. Since 2011, this group has been working to flip the Scotland Correctional Center—a facility decommissioned in 2001 and subsequently left to decay—into a sustainable farm and education center. They’re leasing the property at no cost from the state’s Department of Public Safety.  Read more.....




close (X)