Laura DeGrace — the mad scientist of workshop organizers

laura degrace giving a workshop

This is Laura DeGrace. Don’t mention a community project idea around Laura unless you’re better than half serious about following through because the next day your inbox will have urgent messages about funding possibilities and probably a list of potential recruits and clients.

Her logic is simple: If the idea resonated enough to tell someone then why wouldn’t you get out there and try to make it happen? Hers is a mindset of making possibilities into realities.

Green Eye Coop

Many of her projects — and there are a lot of them — are about food: cooking it, growing it, supplying it, teaching about it, protecting it. Her flagship is Green Eye Coop, which she says gives some coherence to all the stuff she’s organizing. Creating the co-operative also moved her from mostly volunteer work towards a living income for doing the things she was doing anyway.

Love for Organizing

We take for granted that someone who spends most of their time organizing courses and workshops about food and food security is someone who is obsessed about food and food security. Laura told us that she’s really about organizing. An idea pops into her head, she wants to make it happen. An idea pops into someone else’s head, she’ll get in on organize that too.

And as if she didn’t have enough ideas for workshops, she recently traveled to California with a couple of friends, Janet Hamilton and Jen Hudson, to take a week-long master food and preserving course. So, you can be expecting a swarm of preserving workshops in the near future.

laura degrace amongst course participants
This is Laura DeGrace giving a Community Food Mentor Course  at the Petitcodiac Cultural Centre in Petitcodiac near Moncton.

laura to the right watching her children having a picnic
Laura is always building ecosystems for people to thrive, sometimes it can be just a little place to have a picnic.
laura and celeste's hands watering plants
Gardeners’ hands
laura showing shovelful of dirt to participants
Spider in a shovel. You never know what you’ll find in the compost pile.
laura explaining plant to particpants
There is nothing Laura likes more than a chance to put on a workshop and share what she knows.
girl looking at camera
Laura’s daughter Charlie.
laura with her two children in her house
A shot of the school house Laura and her family are living in while they build their dream home. Living in an old school house sounds romantic but the reality is that it’s already been too long. And the longer it takes, the more “innovations” are implemmented, like the bed in the air that provides some “privacy” for the parents.
children struggling
The wedge. Gabriel and Charlie in the tiny kitchen of the old school house Laura and family have been living in “way too long.”
people cooking
Laura doing the calculator thing at one of her CFMs in Petitcodiac.
boy eating
Laura’s son Gabriel