Calgary Community Gardens Meetup Group Message Board › Bringing Organic Gardening and Nutrition to Calgary Schools

Bringing Organic Gardening and Nutrition to Calgary Schools

Rebecca
user 12323298
Calgary, AB
Post #: 1
Hi,
I'm Rebecca and I'm new to the group. I'm hoping to bring organic gardening to Calgary Schools. I was recently at the Calgary Education Fair trying to promote the www.woollyschoolgarden.org project. Although it is a US based company, Canadian schools can enlist in the program. What the schools get are 50 Woolly Pockets, which are modular living wall systems that can be grown indoors or out and are made from recycled plastic bottles. The students will also receive soil, organic seeds, and a prepared organic gardening and nutrition curriculum. The organization is trying to get corporate sponsorship for this program. Please see the website, www.woollyschoolpocket.org for more information. I've been voting almost everyday for the project on Pepsi's Refresh campaign so that this project can be funded.

I wish that I had more knowledge on gardening and nutrition when I was younger. It would've definitely put me on a better path towards healthy living. Rather than wish, I'd rather share this experience with my son and am trying to promote this project to Calgary schools.

If you have any tips or suggestions on how I may go about doing this, it would greatly be appreciated.



On a side note, the Woolly Pockets Gardening company is my supplier and I became aware of the project because of this relationship. I'm not trying to sell my products on this site. Please don't misunderstand. I truly would love to learn this with my kids and think it's awesome to introduce to Calgary schools. I'm just not sure how to go about doing this. Thanks so much for your positive and constructive comments! With your help, I'm sure this dream can be achieved.


Connie
user 8681113
Calgary, AB
Post #: 2
Hello Rebecca,

This sounds like a really intersting project. I have some thoughts that might be helpful:



  • check the CBE website and focus your search on the schools with a Modified Calendar - these schools normally have less time off in the summer time
  • you can contact the Catholic and/or private schools aswell
  • i would suggest to have a real detailed plan (like a business plan) to propose to the principal and/or a teacher, include who would be involved (yourself as a volunteer afterschool club leader, or a teacher either incorporating into thier classroom or as a club), money, time & space requirments, etc. be aware of the recent budget cuts to the CBE and how teachers & admin will probably be a little sensitive to additional financial & time requests
  • what about trying at the community level (lots of communities have garden space), or at art/rec/continuing ed centres, or else Girl Guides/Boy Scouts/ect?


Good luck with this and keep me posted on how things progress.

Connie
Rebecca
user 12323298
Calgary, AB
Post #: 2
Thanks Connie. Oooh. I guess I was just so excited about the project to even think of the budget cuts and writing a business plan. There would be no cost to the school if they're patient enough to wait for private funding. Unfortunately, the project is only open to schools. I will talk to the Woolly Pocket org to see if they'll extend the project to art/rec/continuing ed centres and the scouts.

But great suggestions overall. I will go try it out in this last month of school. I know, timing is a bit off, but no time is better than now. I'm thinking about contacting the CBE ecoteam too.

I'll definitely keep my progress posted. Thanks for your help!
ArushaCentre
user 7128312
Calgary, AB
Post #: 3
Hi Rebecca,
A few years ago Holy Name School was linked with the local community garden at Killarney Community association. The parent contact there is Andrea. This is their 4th year I believe at that location. It might be good to get in contact with the School about this project. They are a "green" school and the principal's have been very supportive. The grade 5's tend to the garden. It is a great outreach project.
Melissa
Rebecca
user 12323298
Calgary, AB
Post #: 3
Hi,
Thanks to all who have posted a response. The help is wonderful. Just to give an update, I've contacted the Calgary School Board and they will look into it. As it is the summer holidays, both their staff and school staff are difficult to reach. So I'm going to put this on hold till Fall. =) Hopefully I can give you some happy news. I really can't wait to put a garden into a school. I think it's going to be awesome!

Thanks for your support!
A former member
Post #: 3
Yes, I grew up with this in Barbados and we called Agricultural Science which was a part of our actual curriculum and every season we had a huge sale of all the products we grew and that helped us to fund lots of activities.
My only warning would be to not accept seeds from an unknown source, gotta watch out for Genetically Engineered seeds.
You've got an awesome idea as farming really needs to get back to what it once was and the best place to start is with the next generation.
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