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Denver7 Everyday Hero weeding out hunger at Denver's South High School

Steff Grogan takes care of school's vegetable garden
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Posted at 9:54 AM, May 03, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-03 11:54:51-04

DENVER -- Outside Denver South High School, Steff Grogan is planting seeds the pandemic has left so many of us starving for.

"It's hope, it's hope, yeah," Grogan said.

It's a passion project she started last year. When the novel coronavirus closed the school and its student-run garden that provides fresh veggies for the school's food bank, Grogan and the nonprofit, Grow Local Colorado, stepped in to help.

"The students who usually take care of this garden, they weren’t gonna be able to, so Jaclyn, who runs the food pantry here, contacted me and said, 'Would you guys be able to grow food here?'" said Barbara Masoner, co-founder for Grow Local Colorado.

"We were lucky enough to find Steff and Barb," said Jaclyn Yelich, who runs South High's food bank. "They planted almost the whole garden."

Chard, kale, squash, radishes, this garden of goods produced more than 300 pounds of vegetables for South High School students in need.

"We were able to donate food just about every week starting in May to the food bank until September," Grogan said.

This season, Grogan is at it again. She's spending a great deal of time not only tending to the school's garden, but also the beds she's put in her own backyard.

"I have about 300 feet of raised beds that I’m growing food in. Last year I also donated about 70 pounds, but this year I quadrupled my growing space so I’m hoping I can donate like 500 pounds of food," Grogan said.

In what has been a dark time for so many, Grogan and the little garden show what can grow from a little seed of hope and a whole lot of kindness.

"It was just a tremendous gift to us to have Steffanie, she was like the veggie angel," Yelich said.

Molly Hendrickson anchors Denver7 in the mornings from 4:30-7 a.m. She also features a different 7Everyday Hero each week on Denver7. Follow Molly on Facebook here and Twitter here. To nominate a hero in your life, click here.