Students at the Waldo County Technical Center helped distribute 36 broiler chickens to the Belfast Soup Kitchen and the Volunteer Regional Food Pantry in Unity Tuesday, June 5.

The chickens were raised at Unity College as part of a Food For All grant awarded by the National Future Farmers of America organization. Junior Alex Fogg explained how WCTC became involved in the project.

“We helped give Unity some ideas about how to raise the chickens differently. They wanted to change the way chickens are fed and bred, and they also wanted them outside more, so they are less likely to get sick,” Fogg said.

One of the innovations that came out of the project was the use of “chicken tractors,” which are fully enclosed cages on wheels that can be easily relocated.

“The cages can be moved at a speed that is slow enough for the chickens to walk along with them, so you don’t have to worry about them getting underfoot,” Fogg said.

As Fogg and fellow classmate junior Rachel Kunesh unloaded the chickens, Kunesh said she was happy to be able to help an organization like the Belfast Soup Kitchen.

“It feels wonderful and it makes your heart feel very, very happy,” Kunesh said. “The soup kitchen needs the help and I’m glad we could give them this food.”

After unloading all of the chickens and preparing to leave, both Kunesh and Fogg said they would recommend other students get involved in the natural resources class, which was responsible for helping Unity with the chickens, because of the positive experience they had in the class.

“I would definitely recommend it, because it’s a lot of fun. You just have to be ready to get your hands dirty,” Kunesh said.

Republican Journal reporter Ben Holbrook can be reached at 338-3333 or at