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Farm Provides Therapy For People With Mental Illness And Developmental Disabilities


The Farm at Penny Lane is a 40-acre plot of land tucked away in north Pittsboro, North Carolina. But this is no conventional farming operation; it is operated by volunteers and people with mental illness and developmental disabilities.

'It's just amazing how when people are able to be self-sufficient, and are able to show off their talent and use their talent- It's amazing what that does to someone, to their self-esteem.' - Thava Mahadevan

Thava Mahadevan is the founder of The Farm at Penny Lane, director of operations at the Center for Excellence in Community Mental Health at the UNC School of Medicine, and executive director of XDS, a nonprofit that provides care to individuals with mental illness and developmental disabilities. Host Frank Stasio talks with Mahadevan about his life and work.

Laura Lee was the managing editor of The State of Things until mid February 2017. Born and raised in Monroe, North Carolina, Laura returned to the Old North state in 2013 after several years in Washington, DC. She received her B.A. in political science and international studies from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2002 and her J.D. from UNC-Chapel Hill School of Law in 2007.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.