Current Community Garden Coordintor:
Heather Snippe was raised in Grand Rapids, and after graduating from Calvin College, moved to New York to work on an organic vegetable farm. She then worked two seasons at a local organic farm. She now lives in the Creston neighborhood along with her husband and two children, where they enjoy being close to friends, their church and the Carman gardens.
Heather is excited to pursue her interest in food justice and community building through gardening and growing food for community dinners and neighbors.
Former Community Garden Coordintors:
Andrea Hensen was raised primarily in Vernon, a small city located in a valley of the North Okanagan in British Columbia. While growing up her Mom spent many summers in the garden and taught Andrea how to love the land and grow all kinds of things. This eventually inspired Andrea to have a garden of her own, preserve food, and share her harvest with friends.
After moving to Hamilton, Ontario, to attend Redeemer University College, she moved to Beaver Falls, PA, to pursue graduate studies in Higher Education at Geneva College.
She and her husband, Greg Veltman, moved in to the Grand Rapids' Creston neighborhood in August 2010 and are mentors in an intentional living learning community house in the neighborhood. Since moving here Andrea has enjoyed exploring the beautiful city of Grand Rapids, meeting her neighbors in Creston, and is excited to continue helping building up the Carman and Carrier Street Community Gardens.
Lance Kraai, originally from New Jersey, recently moved to Grand Rapids MI with his wife Daina after spending the last three years studying for his Masters of Divinity at Regent College in Vancouver B.C.. While in Vancouver he interned with a non-profit who hosted an urban farm in Vancouver's social services neighborhood. He also worked with his wife to start and lead a garden for an after school program for grades 1-3.
Lance and Daina moved to Grand Rapids to be near family and friends. They are currently restoring their home while converting their yard into a small urban farm.
He hopes the community garden will connect people to the gifts that the earth offers to all who are willing to work in it.
Mandi Creveling was born and raised on a farm in Comstock Park, just north of Grand Rapids. She now resides downtown and is attending GRCC. She also works for MOKA as a Community Living Support staff helping to people with developmental disabilities into the community and work towards personal goals.
She is really interested in community building. For the past 4 years she has helped organize and facilitate Really Really Free Markets in Grand Rapids, a free flea market aimed at redistributing the surplus of things in the community.
Mandi is very excited to be a part of Creston community gardens where she can integrate her passions for gardening and the developmentally disabled community.