Partnering with St. Vincent’s Academy

Bethesda Academy recently teamed up with St. Vincent’s Academy to help grow an organic garden on the school’s campus in downtown Savannah. St. Vincent’s received a special grant to fund the student-run garden project, which will help grow organic food for the working poor.

St. Vincent’s Academy, the oldest continuously operating Mercy school in the United States, enlisted the help of Bethesda Academy, which runs a successful organic farm program for boys at its campus on Ferguson Avenue, to start the new organic garden.

Reid Archer, Bethesda Academy’s Organic Farm and Gardens program director, and Kerry Shay, assistant program director at Bethesda, recently met with St. Vincent’s teachers Megan Kitchens and Justin Johnson as well as students involved in the garden project. Archer and Shay offered ideas about how to use the grant money to get start an organic garden.

“Bethesda Academy is pleased to offer our help, guidance and support to St. Vincent’s Academy for their organic garden,” said Archer. “We want to ensure this garden project is successful in growing food for those in need in our community.”

Since meeting with St. Vincent’s teachers and students, Bethesda Academy teachers and students have assisted with garden planning, seed purchasing, seedling nurturing, farming demonstrations and raised bed installation.

Longwood Plantation, a local organic producer of raised bed garden soil mix, recently donated the garden soil mix to St. Vincent’s Academy, so students and faculty can use the extra grant money for other needs.

Bethesda Academy’s garden partnership with St. Vincent’s Academy is ongoing. Teachers and students will continue to collaborate on the organic garden project until its completion.

For more information about Bethesda Academy, please visit or call 912.351.2061