March 2, 2015
Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center
Mission Statement: Olivewood’s mission is to empower students and families from diverse backgrounds to be healthy and active citizens through organic gardening, environmental stewardship, and nutrition education. Our purpose is building healthy families and a healthy environment.
Advancing Health and Wellness: Olivewood provides volunteer and internship opportunities for all ages, and in 2015 we launched a High School Urban Agriculture Program. The 15 week program is made up of 8 weeks of core classes in growing food in an urban environment. The remaining 7 weeks engage the students in a community service project to build a garden. Our first cohort learned how to build a productive and healthy garden and culminated with a lawn to garden conversion project for a neighborhood resident. This year we are increasing the number of students and refining the curriculum. The students will collaborate with parents and teachers to build a garden at the local high school. Our long term goal is to develop a program that can reach thousands of high schoolers.
Description: Olivewood provides free and low cost access to hands-on garden based nutrition education to enhance health and wellness. Our programs are effective in changing eating habits and health behaviors AND sustaining those changes. The combination of classes for children and teens, parents, families, and teachers touches every individual with a direct impact on a child’s health. We are creating adventurous and healthy eaters and motivating families to make changes together. In the process we develop community leaders to change neighborhood food landscapes. This is timely and appropriate in South County where there are food deserts and an overabundance of fast food.
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