Utilizing a "farmstead model" with a holistic approach - caring for the entire individual - Bittersweet Farms harnesses the natural rhythm of living through emphasizing farming as a meaningful, predictable and fitting way of life.
Whether gathering wood to fuel our greenhouse furnace, providing compost to enrich the soil or engaging in the cultivation, propagation and nurturing of plants, our individuals with autism learn valuable work skills and benefit financially from the sale of our natural and nutritious products.
The horticulture department provides opportunities for developing fine motor skills and gross motor skills, as well as providing active engagement through rewarding activity. Gardening is a wonderfully therapeutic activity for individuals with autism. Horticulture helps time to become measurable, which often times can be a struggle for a person with autism. The individuals who participate in horticulture are able to see the cycle of life in a few months (seeding, planting, harvesting, etc.).
Horticulture as vocation provides an opportunity for employment with the Community Supported Agriculture Program. Our new program, Bittersweet Gardens, will create a true work culture while keeping the supports of expert staff, which is a stepping stone to community based employment.