Page County Sheriff’s Inmate Garden produces purpose

The Page County Sheriff's Inmate Garden gives offenders purpose and something to take pride in.
Published: Aug. 31, 2022 at 12:23 PM EDT
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PAGE COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) - Fresh produce and a sense of purpose are being grown in the Page County Sheriff’s Inmate Garden.

It’s had an especially good yield this year. Sheriff Chad Cubbage said they’ve harvested 120 bushels of potatoes and sweet corn, around 300 bushels of cabbage, and the list goes on.

The vegetables grown are used to feed inmates at the Page County Jail, which cuts down on those food costs.

Sheriff Cubbage noted that’s especially helpful since around 30 percent of the jail population is diabetic.

The Sheriff’s Office will also give back to some of the local nonprofits that are in need of food as well, but this garden does more than put food on the table.

The Sheriff said it teaches important life skills to inmates and gives them something to take pride in.

When this program first started, and the inmates first came out into the garden, there were times that you would hear them grumble a little bit, but as they would get out here and work it and see the plants grow and the vegetables grow and then when it’s prepared on the table to eat, they took it personal and they begin to grow with it and enjoy it,” Sheriff Cubbage said.

He explained that inmates tend to the garden about three days a week as they also work to fulfill other responsibilities in the county, like trash pick-up and mowing.

The Sheriff is proud of how the garden and inmates have grown and says he really appreciates the community efforts that make it all possible. Southern States and the Page County Farm Bureau donate seed and fertilizer each year.