Our recently launched Whole Kids Foundation has partnered with FoodCorps to roll out the new Whole Kids Foundation School Garden Grant Program — supporting the growth of school gardening — and we couldn’t be more excited! Kids and gardening make a winning combination, which is why Whole Kids Foundation and FoodCorps are teaming up to help make fresh, whole food readily available in schools through the School Garden Grant Program. As part of this partnership, FoodCorps will help review grant applications, be available to troubleshoot challenges and serve as a resource for grant recipients as they move forward with their gardens. School gardens are an engaging way to integrate math, science and health curriculum into a dynamic, interactive setting. They also help provide a base of knowledge that allows children to take an active role in healthy food choices. Each school garden harvest can be used in classroom demonstrations, for tastings or other education or as part of science, math, art or other curriculum. Here’s what FoodCorps has to say about their program:
“FoodCorps is a national nonprofit organization that seeks to address the trend of childhood obesity and diet-related disease by increasing vulnerable children's knowledge of, engagement with, and access to healthy food, while preparing the next generation of leaders for careers in food, health and agriculture. The centerpiece of their work is an AmeriCorps public service program that places highly motivated young leaders in limited-resource communities of need where they conduct hands-on nutrition education, build and tend school gardens, and bring high-quality local food into public school cafeterias. Within a decade, they expect to deploy an annual service force of more than 1,000. FoodCorps aims to have a significant impact on some of the most pressing issues of our time: childhood obesity, environmental sustainability, and the way we farm, eat and educate. Like a good garden, the roots of FoodCorps run wide. FoodCorps was the product of a two-year collaborative planning process that engaged thousands of stakeholders, hundreds of volunteers, and nonprofit leaders from across the fields of food, education, and public health. Six young leaders came together to incubate this project, each bringing their passion, expertise and organizational backing to the effort: Curt Ellis, Debra Eschmeyer, Cecily Upton, Crissie McMullan, Jerusha Klemperer, and Ian Cheney. The planning process was incubated by the National Farm to School Network, with founding partners Slow Food USA, The National Center for Appropriate Technology, and Wicked Delicate. FoodCorps is now a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in New York City working at 42 sites in 10 states with 50 FoodCorps Service Members in 2011-2012.”Visit Food-Corps.org to learn even more about their organization and about volunteering. You can get more information about Whole Kids Foundation and their School Garden Grant program on their website. Did you garden as a kid? How did it shape the way you think about food as an adult?