Feed Fayetteville works to educate youth and adults alike about growing and eating nutritious food. One of the ways we do this is through our Farm to Preschool programs. Farm to Preschool, an extension of Farm to School, is a nation wide program that serves to integrate experiential nutrition and garden activities into early education, so as to influence eating habits and lifestyle choices of young children.
“Program components can include the following: sourcing local foods in school snacks and meals; promoting and increasing access to local foods for providers and families; offering nutrition and/or garden-based curricula; school gardening; in-class food preparation and taste testing; field trips to farms, farmers’ markets and community gardens; parent workshops; implementing preschool wellness policies which address Farm to Preschool principles; and influencing policies at the local, state or national level.” (http://www.farmtopreschool.org/)
We currently work at the Ivory M Conley and Fayetteville centers of the EOA Washington County Head Start. Both locations have a school garden, which we maintain. Combined, the two Farm-to-Preschool programs serve approximately 75 low-income children. With the help of our many dedicated community partners and volunteers, Feed Fayetteville is able to provide weekly or bi-weekly garden activities including planting, watering, composting, harvesting, cooking and tasting. These activities allow children to get their hands dirty in an outdoor classroom setting and more importantly, they become directly involved with the food they are consuming. Children are involved with food processes from seed to snack! Feed Fayetteville seeks to involve parents by sending materials and produce home with children and inviting them to be involved with garden upkeep. This helps complete the cycle to affect change in eating habits at home as well.
The Fayetteville Community Garden Coalition (FCGC) is an alliance of partners, gardens, and friends who work cooperatively to develop a network of gardens that provide locally grown food produced and consumed by community members. Their mission is to facilitate the development and growth of sustainable community gardens in Fayetteville that build community and produce fresh, high quality food for all. They are a great resource for finding, starting or getting involved with a garden in your own neighborhood! Take a look at the map of Fayetteville Community Gardens, to find one near you.
To learn more about community gardens in Fayetteville, you can also visit the City of Fayettevilles Garden in the Parks site. Here you can find resources pertaining to the citys Gardens in the Parks program, Food to Share program, and information about ways to start or join a community garden near you!