The Lauter Park Community Gardens, where youth and community members grow food for the community and host workshops, workdays, and community events;

The Windham Youth CORE Program (“Cultivating Opportunities, Resources, and Education”), that engages local high school students in youth-led community food enterprises through which they build their own skill-set for career and life experiences and build their community at the same time; 

Facilitating, supporting, or hosting Community Programs, such as the Windham Community Food Network, the Willimantic Farmers’ Market, and Solid Ground Farmer Trainings.

I am more confident and aware, and I’ve decided a college route that will help me continue the work I do here. I feel like I’ve found my voice. 


This year I have learned how to facilitate a conversation. The workshops we did have changed my perspective on how to approach people. I am different because I have improved my presentation skills. 

Your mentor teaches you, and you also do things on your own and learn by yourself, and then you teach others what you know.

Congratulations to all the recipients of our 1st annual CommUNITY/ComUNIDAD Leaders Award!

This CommUNITY/CommUNIDAD event originated as a result of the Windham Youth CORE’s newest initiative: “Certified Community”. Certifed Community, which was created last summer, began as a way for the Youth CORE to market our own locally-made products such as our Sofrito and Frog Fire/Fuego de Rana hot sauce, while educating the community about the importance of investing locally. However, the initiative has since grown to recognize other businesses, people, and programs working to improve Windham’s local community by investing their time, money, and efforts into the local food system, economy, and community. CommUNITY/ CommUNIDAD is the first awards ceremony that will recognize pioneers in not only the food system, but the community as a whole. Ruby Rodriguez, one of the key people in the organizing of the event is most excited to commemorate those who have made a change in Windham’s local community: “I am most excited to see the inspiration. People will get to reach out into their community and see that someone is watching, and they are not doing it for nothing.”

~Malakai James Poulin, Windham Youth CORE Member