Two years ago, Marcy Weber had lost custody of her children and was homeless, unemployed and in trouble with the law because of a drinking and drug problem that began at age 10.
Today, she and her children live in a home she bought. She owns a car, works full time, is drug- and alcohol-free, and has hope, thanks in part to the cooperative efforts of University of Missouri Extension, the Cass County Drug Court and Cass County Psychological Services.
Weber is “paying it forward” for mistakes she hopes are long behind her. Part of the “Pay It Forward” project involved fundraising for a community demonstration garden tended by participants in the two county programs under the direction of MU Extension Cass County Master Gardeners.
Weber gathered donations of seeds, fertilizer, plants and cash for the garden. Six raised beds alongside the county extension center in Harrisonville provide fresh local produce for participants who often live in buildings that don’t have room for gardens. The gardens are used to teach horticulture, nutrition, cooking and food preservation.