Meet Elisheva Stark, an outdoor environmental educator focused on early childhood development. Eliesheva participated in Pearlstone’s Integrated Sustainability Apprenticeship in 2013 and now works as the Community Garden Coordinator at Pearlstone; a position that combines her passion for Jewish learning with facilitating connection to the natural world.
“I came to Pearlstone without previous experience on a farm but a lot of curiosity about our current food system. I wanted to know exactly what resources, time and energy it took to grow our food and how to participate in that process. My other goal as an apprentice was to to live communally in a sustainable Jewish setting and gain the hands-on knowledge of what that required. My experience at Pearlstone brought all of that to life.
By the end of the my apprenticeship I felt like I could call myself a farmer. Growing food and taking care of animals from Spring through Fall gave me so much knowledge about vegetable, dairy, and egg production. Spending long days in the fields and with the animals clued me in to the challenges of creating an organic food system, while also providing me with the most rewarding experience of growing and eating my own food.
Throughout the growing season, I watched plants sprout from seed, flower, bear fruit, die from disease or pests, reproduce, and get pollinated. The whole cycle of life is right in front of your eyes, it’s impossible not to learn and grow from it.
Communal living is such an empowering experience. Our small group of apprentices quickly become an entire community of friends. If you have the desire to learn and the drive to work, the rest will follow. For those with the dedication and enthusiasm to be a part of this lifestyle; you will greatly benefit from this program!”