Life skills grow from a garden


Francis Mancho, 18, of Budd Lake wanted to help Matheny students learn entrepreneurship, so he applied his own ingenuity to the task. The volunteer got permission from his church to start a community garden, where he now grows vegetables the students sell at a café they operate twice a week. Because some of the students couldn’t ring up cash-register sales, Mancho applied for—and won—a $3,000 grant from the Jenny Jones Foundation, an organization started by the national TV talk-show host. He used the money to buy two special touch-screen computers, which help the students sell—and improve their cognitive abilities and quality of life.

Read about Mancho’s idea on the foundation’s “Jenny’s Heroes” website, and in an article from the Mount Olive Chronicle newspaper.


Above, from left: Steve Proctor, Matheny president; Francis Mancho’s father, Joseph, and mother, Maureen; Francis Mancho; Gail Cunningham, Matheny coordinator of volunteer activities; and Sean Murphy, vice principal of The Matheny School.