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Nonprofit resumes work with Lakeside garden project

by BRET ANNE SERBIN
Daily Inter Lake | August 1, 2021 12:00 AM

Architecture isn't a career that easily lends itself to working from home.

After the disruption of the past year due to the pandemic, participants in a Lakeside architecture internship have renewed enthusiasm for hands-on work in the community.

100 Fold Studios, now in its seventh year, offers a summer internship program to architecture students interested in nonprofit careers. The faith-based organization gives interns like William Scurry "an understanding of what it looks like to combine faith and vocation."

Scurry is one of 19 students working with 100 Fold Studio in Lakeside this summer.

The organization wound up suspending its program amid the COVID-19 pandemic last year. Fortunately, one-third of the interns who signed on for the 2020 season were able to join the group in 2021.

This year's cohort hails from 15 different universities in five different countries.

"There are a lot of different stories," said Scurry, who found out about 100 Fold while volunteering in the Dominican Republic.

They all share a passion for building their faith while building infrastructure.

This summer, their focus is creating an arbor and storage space for the Lakeside Community Garden, located on the property of The Living Church at Lakeside.

The community garden started in 2012. There are currently 28 gardeners who maintain plots growing fruits and vegetables. The garden offers a give-and-take box, where growers can deposit extra produce available to anyone.

Last year, community garden co-director Holly Hand reached out to 100 Fold co-founder John Hudson to enlist the help of his team. She was interested in building a storage space for the garden's equipment, particularly its lawnmower. Gardeners said they wanted better fencing to keep deer out of the garden, and the church that provides the space was looking for some aesthetic improvements to the garden, too.

HAND AND Hudson did their best to try to get the project off the ground last summer. Hand said her first-ever Zoom call took place with the 100 Fold crew.

But despite their efforts, 100 Fold ultimately wasn't able to hold its summer program in the midst of the pandemic.

But in June 2021, the 100 Fold interns finally got to work on the garden.

Throughout July, the 19 of them labored on aesthetic and functional improvements to the community garden.

They built an arbor entryway with benches, a camouflaged storage space, and installed fence posts to further serve its members' needs.

With the recent additions, the garden will be able to support its own parking separated from the church parking space and secure its own water source.

"We're so thankful," Hand said. "These kids are just amazing."

The benefits of the program go both ways.

"They grow plants and grow relationships," said Hudson. "It's a win-win-win."

The interns have the opportunity to apply their studies in the field, earning 10% of the hours necessary to eventually secure their architecture licenses.

They also get the satisfaction of contributing to the community and the opportunity to apply their studies in the field.

"I hope this will jump-start my work life," said Julia Plapper, a German student, as she worked alongside her peers to build a gate for the garden.

More information about the program can be found at 100foldstudio.org/projects.

Reporter Bret Anne Serbin may be reached at 406-758-4459 or bserbin@dailyinterlake.com.

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Architecture students, from left, Emma Gallaugher, from University of Virginia; Emma Schnelle, a graduate student at The University of Texas at Austin; and Katherine Harland, from Clemson University; secure a 7-foot, 6-inch high piece of deer netting to the arbor of the Lakeside Community Garden outside the Living Church at Lakeside on Friday, July 30. The three are part of 100 Fold Studios' summer internship program for architecture students interested in nonprofit careers. (Casey Kreider/Daily Inter Lake)

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Architecture students, Julia Plapper, left, from Munich, Germany and Alexis Warner, center, from Auburn University, install a hinge for a gate held by William Scurry, right, from The University of North Carolina at Charlotte, for the exterior fencing of the Lakeside Community Garden outside the Living Church at Lakeside on Friday, July 30. The three are part of 100 Fold Studios' summer internship program for architecture students interested in nonprofit careers. (Casey Kreider/Daily Inter Lake)