This project addresses the issue of availability & consumption of fresh produce in low income communities. The primary goal is to educate the community on gardening as a means to addressing shortages of fresh produce and increase the consumption of fresh produce through education on its benefits. This 4-H Garden & community service project will focus on teaching the community how to grow fresh produce at a Title I elementary school and church to educate for healthier living and provide support and fresh produce for the church’s Food Bank. To develop our plan, we spoke with school officials, PTA, church leaders, and Food Bank coordinators, as well as health and community development professionals from CSUS and UC Davis.
How will 4-H help?
The 4-H Youth will provide two or three mini-workshops for the teachers at O.W. Erlewine Elementary on how to better use the garden space by applying season extending and integrated pest management techniques. 4-H members will also work with the church Food Bank to include garden produce in its community food baskets, along with information on how to use this produce, and its benefits. 4-H members will also hold monthly meetings at the school as part of a Garden Project, and use this as outreach to recruit new 4-H youth members. 4-H members will join the church and school communities for garden workdays. Our collaborative partners include: O.W. Erlewine Elementary School, Sierra Arden United Church of Christ, Sacramento County Extension, Talini's Nursery, and Peaceful Valley Farm & Garden Supply. This project will serve an extended community of over 800 people from the Title I school community (teachers, parents & students), and the community served by the church Food Bank.