Adventist University Launches Hydroponic Greenhouse Project

Bethlehem Green’ ministry will serve as a local center of influence, leaders said.

Sharnie Zamora, Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies
Adventist University Launches Hydroponic Greenhouse Project
The Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies recently inaugurated a hydroponic greenhouse project that, according to leaders, will also serve as a local center of influence. [Photo: AIIAS]

With the goal of addressing the challenges of purchasing expensive vegetables and promoting sustainable farming practices, Kim SiYoung, applied theology professor at the Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies (AIIAS) Theological Seminary, has spearheaded the launch of a hydroponic greenhouse project on the institution’s campus in Silang, Cavite, Philippines.

Motivated by the high cost and difficulty of producing vegetables in the Philippines due to unpredictable weather and by a lack of application of advanced farming techniques among Adventists in the region, Kim embarked on the Bethlehem Green project to address these pressing issues.

The project’s primary aim is to educate church leaders and students about innovative farming methods and to provide fresh produce to those in need. Through months of planning, which included visits to hydroponic farms, research, and consultation with experts, Kim and his team laid the groundwork for the greenhouse initiative. It was funded by donors from South Korea.

The groundwork for the greenhouse’s foundation began on January 11. With the assistance of the CEO of Hydroponics Cavite and J&M Crops and Agricultural Supplies and Services, Mark Aries Camiguing, and his team, the 8-by-18-meter (26-by-59-foot) greenhouse and 2,700-hole hydroponics system was constructed within weeks.

By February 1, a group of interested students, staff, and faculty of AIIAS attended an orientation on how this sustainable agricultural system operates. The group participated in a hands-on demonstration, learning the delicate process of transplanting the seedlings and preparing precise measurements of nutrients that will circulate throughout the hydroponic system. A greenhouse opening ceremony was held on February 14, where leaders behind the initiative inaugurated the Bethlehem Green project.

Kim emphasized that God’s provision and the AIIAS administration have been instrumental in giving support for the project. The project’s success depends on collective effort and support from the AIIAS community and beyond. Volunteers will manage the garden, with one individual dedicated to overseeing day-to-day operations. The garden organizers have also recruited missionaries from the 1000 Missionary Movement campus who have finished their one-year service in the mission field. 

According to Kim, this project provides an additional opportunity for missionary training and engagement. The harvested produce will benefit not only individuals residing within the AIIAS community but will also extend to those who would like to purchase the produce. Additionally, the produce will be distributed to local church members in need through the assistance of district pastors. 

Any profits from Bethlehem Green produce are slated to fund various missionary endeavors, ranging from outreach activities to evangelism, church construction, and missionary support. “The greenhouse will serve as a center of influence for community service and collaboration,” he said.

The original version of this story was posted on the Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies news site.

Sharnie Zamora, Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies