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National Farm to School Network


This Week in Farm to School: 8/20/19

NFSN Staff Tuesday, August 20, 2019
Every week, we share opportunities, action items and a selection of media stories that relate to the farm to school movement. To submit an item for consideration, send us an email. To be considered, content should be of national interest to the farm to school community. 

Grants & Funding 
1. Get Schools Cooking Grants
Deadline: October 28, 2019
A program of Chef Ann Foundation, Get Schools Cooking (previously known as the School Food Support Initiative) provides school districts with the operational foundation necessary to transition their Food & Nutrition Service Departments from a heat & serve or processed model to one that is rooted in scratch cooking using real ingredients. Through Get Schools Cooking, food service teams are guided through an intensive, three-year program. Applications for the 2019 Cohort are now open. An information webinar is scheduled for Sept. 12. Learn more here

2. NCR-SARE Youth Educator Sustainable Agriculture Grants
Deadline: November 14, 2019
North Central Region-SARE recognizes that youth programs are a way to introduce new and exciting farming and ranching options to youth, parents, and community members. Youth Educator grants support projects by youth educators that encourage youth to try sustainable practices and explore sustainable agriculture as a viable career option. Applicants can request up to $4,000 for youth education projects. North Central Region-SARE includes: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. Learn more here

3. SeedMoney Grants for Garden Projects
Deadline: November 12, 2019
SeedMoney is offering 255 garden grants totaling $40,000 to diverse food garden projects through a 30-day crowdfunding challenge running from November 15 to December 15. The grants are open to all types of public food garden project, including youth gardens, community gardens, food bank gardens, etc., regardless of their location. Grant applications will be accepted until November 12. Learn more here

4. Head Start Gro More Good Garden Grants
Deadline: October 11, 2019
In collaboration with The Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation and KidsGardening, The National Head Start Association is honored to bring the life-enhancing benefits of gardens to more children and families in the Head Start community. Schools, community action programs, non-profits, hospitals, community centers and inter-generational groups that hosts Head Start programs are eligible to apply. The grants awarded are in the amount of $5,000, plus a garden kit and materials and gardening educational resources. Learn more here

Webinar & Events
1. NFSN WEBINAR Bring Farm to School to Life with Highbush Blueberries
October 3 // 1-2 PM EST
October is National Farm to School Month, the perfect time to host a farm to school event to celebrate healthy, local food in the cafeteria, classroom and beyond! Resources like the Highbush Blueberry Farm to School Playbook can be a great tool for helping schools of any size find small and big ways to get kids excited about where their food comes from. On this webinar, three schools will share how they’ve used the Farm to School Playbook to put together successful nutrition celebrations with blueberries. Nutrition Consultant Dayle Hayes, MS, RD, will lead a panel discussion with three rockstar school nutrition professionals, who will share easy and practical inspiration for schools looking to kickstart their farm to school programs, tips for a successful promotion and increases in school breakfast/lunch participation, and inspiration for events your students will love. This webinar is hosted by the National Farm to School Network and sponsored by the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council. Register here

2. Webinar: SGSO Network Crowdfunding Webinar
Wednesday, August 28 // 3-4 PM EST
Time and time again, the ability to raise adequate financial support tops the list of challenges of school garden programs both at individual school and SGSO levels. In this webinar we will explore the concept of crowdfunding which is a term broadly used to describe fundraising efforts focused on raising smaller amounts of money from large numbers of people frequently through online and social media efforts. This webinar is a part of the School Garden Support Organization (SGSO) Network. Register here

3. First Nations Food Sovereignty Summit
September 23-26, 2019 // Green Bay, Wisconsin
First Nations Development Institute (First Nations) and the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin (Oneida) again are co-hosting the national Food Sovereignty Summit. It will be held September 23-26, 2019, at the Radisson Hotel in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The conference workshops are divided into three tracks: Sustaining Food Systems, Strengthening Tribal Sovereignty, and Caring for Our Lands. Learn more and register here

4. 2019 Western Youth Food Sovereignty Summit - Application Now Open
October 18-20, 2019 // Camp Verde, AZ
The 2019 Western Region Native Youth Food Sovereignty Summit is organized by Intertribal Agriculture Council and hosted by the Yavapai Apache Nation. At this summit, Native American youth will explore different areas of agriculture ranging from traditional foods to land stewardship techniques. This year's event is open to high school and college aged youth from the ages 13-22 living in Arizona and Utah. Participants must be enrolled in a federally or state recognized tribe or be a tribal descendant. Apply here

5. NFSN EVENT Save the Date: 10th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference
April 20-24, 2020 // Albuquerque, NM
The 10th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference is coming to Albuquerque, New Mexico, April 20-24, 2020! Hosted by the National Farm to School Network, this biennial event will convene a diverse group of food service professionals, farmers, educators, students, representatives from nonprofits and government agencies, public health professionals and more to learn, network, and strengthen this important movement. Do you have expertise to share? We’ll be seeking proposals for conference content (workshops, posters, etc.) from stakeholders interested in sharing their models and strategies for making farm to cafeteria initiatives a reality in their communities. The Request for Proposals will open mid-August. Visit to learn more and start making plans to join us in Albuquerque! 

Resources & Research 
1. NFSN RESOURCE 2019 Vision and Key Strategies to Advance Farm to Early Care and Education
In this newly revised resource, the National Farm to School Network’s Farm to Early Care and Education (ECE) Working Group outlines a vision for the future of farm to ECE and details key strategies at the local, state, tribal and national level to achieve this vision. The NFSN Farm to Early Care and Education Working Group is a cohort of experienced leaders and stakeholders in the field that work collaboratively in identifying and addressing barriers and strategic opportunities to further the national farm to ECE movement. This resource is intended to provide guidance and direction to NFSN and national, state, tribal and local partners in prioritizing and coordinating efforts to advance the farm to ECE movement across the country. Learn more here

Jobs & Opportunities
1. Farm to School Supply Chain Development Program Manager, CADE (Oneonta, NY)
Center for Agricultural Development and Entrepreneurship (CADE), whose vision it is to "build a vibrant food system in which locally owned agricultural businesses thrive and consumers are nourished by healthy, sustainably produced food," recently received a USDA grant that will enable us to support the important Farm to School  incentives in place in New York by building infrastructure that connects regionally food producers to NY State school districts.  CADE is currently seeking to fill a full time program manager position under that grant. Applications are due August 21. Learn more here

2. University of Minnesota College of Food, Agriculture, and Natural Resources Mentorship Program
The University of Minnesota seeks mentors to guide college students and post-docs exploring careers in your field! The College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences (CFANS) matches industry professionals with CFANS students and post-docs who are seeking guidance and insight into a career path. The program runs November 2019-May 2020. The U of M asks that mentors and students check in, either in-person, by email, or by phone/Skype at least once a month for an hour, and there is a required half-day job-shadowing component. Local and long-distance mentors are welcome! Submit your application by September 23, and learn more about the program here. Contact with any additional questions.

Farm to School in the News
Tennessee school uses gardening to cultivate students' business acumen
When St. Mary’s School received a grant to build a few raised flower beds six years ago, it wasn’t much — and it wasn’t near the level it is now. Now, the garden has expanded, and serves as a basis for teaching students not only how to garden, but how to run a business as well. (Johnson City Press)

Alaska school district works to reduce food waste
As kids get ready to head back to school, the staff at the Matanuska-Susitna Borough School District Nutrition Services department are prepared to fuel students’ learning with healthy food. “We do a hot pack and a cold pack every day,” explained Nutrition Services supervisor Chris Johnson. “So what is manufactured today is what schools will be getting tomorrow.” (KTVA)

North Carolina teens grow food, faith and focus on Cedar Grove Farm
Sankofa Farms was originally supposed to be a school garden in which middle school students could get away from the pressures of the classroom and get their hands dirty in the soil. After the proposal was rejected by the school’s principal, middle-school science teacher Kamal Bell made a much bigger investment in the idea. (WUNC)

Read past editions of This Week for more funding opportunities, webinars and events, jobs, and ways to take action to support farm to school growth across the country.


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