Students at three Des Moines schools will have new opportunities to engage in hands-on garden education, thanks to the help of the United Way, HyVee and NCAT FoodCorps team members who helped the schools with the fundraising.
Hillis Elementary School received $1,480 and Goodrell Middle School won $715 in 2014 Community Garden mini grants made available through United Way of Central Iowa. Moulton Elementary School received a $750 Hy-Vee One Step Garden Grant.
The funding will provide infrastructure and supplies to maintain and expand these schools’ garden projects and further excite students, teachers and families about gardening.
“We are very grateful to have received this funding, and thank United Way of Central Iowa for the opportunities this represents. The continued growth and success of school gardens is a priority to the families, students and teachers at our school,” says Beth Sloan, Hillis Elementary School Principal.
Kathy Friest, Goodrell Family and Consumer Science Teacher, concurs: “We are excited to have additional resources to help pay for basic supplies such as seeds and compost, and to help construct additional infrastructure including raised beds, potato towers, and cold frames.”
“At Moulton, we are excited because the Hy-Vee funding will enable us to start a school farmers market to further serve students, teachers and families, as well as to help us maintain and expand our garden projects,” says Susan Rushing, Kindergarten Teacher and Garden Coordinator. “Since Moulton is a year-round school, teachers can take advantage of the garden being in full swing and use it as a learning tool when classes resume in July.”
FoodCorps Service Members Alayna Schutte and Chelsea Krist, who helped write the schools’ garden grants, credit teachers, parents and other volunteers for the exciting school garden programs at the schools where they work.
NCAT’s Midwest Office is the host for Iowa FoodCorps, with 7 service members in Des Moines, Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Decorah and Waterloo.