Gurnee, IL, November 21, 2017– American Legion Post 771 has joined Growing Health Veterans, a non-profit based in Grayslake, IL in an effort to help veterans suffering from service-related health issues such as PTSD. The Gurnee Post will work with Growing Health Veterans to build several “hoop-house” shaped greenhouses on vacant land owned by the Post just south of their baseball fields on Milwaukee Ave. in Gurnee.

“When I met Ellen Ewing from Growing Healthy Veterans at a local Veterans Community Partners meeting and she told me about her program, I knew the Legionaries of Post 771 would support this initiative”.” I had no idea that our country needs to replace One Million retiring farmers with next-gen farmers and veterans have the training, background, and makeup to be highly successful in agriculture”, said Jim Huisel, Commander of Post 771. “We have been looking for a way to help our recent veterans and this project is the perfect fit!”  “Our plan is to offer the harvest from our microgreen hoop house garden to veterans who participate in the project and sell produce to local restaurants. We already have a commitment from Sara McKinnon and Humberto Martinez, Jr. of Timothy O’Toole’s in Gurnee to participate in this program.”  “Our technical advisor on this project is Will Allen, Author of “The Good Food Revolution” and international expert on urban farming.

On December 2nd @ 1 PM, Growing Health Veterans and American Legion Post 771 will present the award-winning documentary: GROUND OPERATIONS, Battlefield to Farmfield at the American Legion Post Home located at 749 Milwaukee Ave. Gurnee, IL. The Producer and filmmaker of the documentary, Dulanie Ellis will be attending and will participate in a dynamic conversation on veterans and sustainable agriculture. The viewing is free and light snacks will be served.

Growing Health Veterans is a non-profit based in Grayslake Illinois.  Through the experience of working with the soil along with providing peer support, GHV seeks to help veterans heal from traumas that often lead to isolation and suicide, while at the same time delivering the skills necessary for a variety of careers in agriculture.

Gurnee American Legion Post 771 is a veterans organization based in Gurnee, IL. The American Legion is based on the four pillars of Veterans Affairs & Rehabilitation, National Security, Americanism and Children & Youth. Gurnee Post was established in 1935 and has a membership in excess of 330 members.

Dulanie M. Ellis: Dulanie launched her own production company, Walk Your Talk Productions, in order to explore what it would take to protect the world-class farmland in her region from development. She joined a civic roundtable and took leadership in her community's Food Council, with the goal of sustaining and promoting local agriculture. Thus began her commitment to agricultural activism. Immersed in the issues of environmental stewardship of farming, housing for farm workers and the pioneering home-farming movement, she was led to the greatest story of her career: Ground Operations: Battlefields to Farmfields. The goal of Ground Operations is to strengthen the growing network of combat veterans who are transitioning into organic agriculture and to build their resources so that they can create healthy new lives for themselves and food security for our nation. Working with top-tier documentary consultants, Dulanie has fashioned a vibrant social action campaign for the film, a companion book and national tour of film-food-farming events that champion our veterans' new mission.

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If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Jim Huisel at 847-910-3330 or email at jhuisel@post771.org