community and school gardens growing healthy communities

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Community and School Gardens

Community and School GardensGrowing Healthy Communities

Background: Health and NutritionAdult obesity rates exceed 25% in 31 states and 20% in 49 states and Washington, D.C.Arkansas ranks 10th in the nationIn 2009, less than 14% of adults consumed fruit 2 or more times per day and vegetables 3 or more times per dayLess than 24% consumed fruit 2 times per dayLess than 29% consumed vegetables 3 times per day

2Background: Food Insecurity49.1 million (12.2%) live in food insecure households, 14.6% at least some of the timeArkansas ranked 3rd (15.9%) in the nation23.5 million (8.4%) of U.S. population live in low-income areas, more than a mile from a supermarket. - 2.3 million do not have access to a vehicle - food deserts

Food insecureAt times during the year, these households were uncertain of having, or unable to acquire, enough food to meet the needs of all their members because they had insufficient money or other resources for food. Food-insecure households include those withlow food securityandvery low food security.14.6 percent (17.1 million) of U.S. households were food insecure at some time during 2008.An increase from 11.1 percent in 2007.

Low food securityThese food-insecure households obtained enough food to avoid substantially disrupting their eating patterns or reducing food intake by using a variety of coping strategies, such as eating less varied diets, participating in Federal food assistance programs, or getting emergency food from community food pantries.8.9 percent (10.4 million) of U.S. households had low food security in 2008.An increase from 7.0 percent in 2007.

Very low food securityReports of multiple indications of disrupted eating patterns and reduced food intake

Food Desert is defined as, according to the 2008 Farm Bill, an area inthe United States with limited access to affordable and nutritious food,particularly such an area composed of predominantly lower incomeneighborhoods and communities3Background: Physical Activity2005: 10.3% of adults engage in no moderate-to-vigorous activity in leisure time, occupation or transportation higher in females (12%) 2008: 25.4 % participate in no leisure time physical activity29.3% of ArkansansDecreased from 31% in 1989 to 28% in 2000 to 25% in 2008 physical activity(meeting the "Healthy People 2010 Objectives") is defined as reported moderate-intensity activities in a usual week (i.e., brisk walking, bicycling, vacuuming, gardening, or anything else that causes small increases in breathing or heart rate) for at least 30 minutes per day, at least 5 days per week; or vigorous-intensity activities in a usual week (i.e., running, aerobics, heavy yard work, or anything else that causes large increases in breathing or heart rate) for at least 20 minutes per day, at least 3 days per week or both. This can be accomplished through lifestyle activities (i.e., household, transportation, or leisure-time activities).Insufficient physical activityis defined as doing more than 10 minutes total per week of moderate or vigorous-intensity lifestyle activities (i.e., household, transportation, or leisure-time activity), but less than the recommended level of activity.Inactivityis defined as less than 10 minutes total per week of moderate or vigorous-intensity lifestyle activities (i.e., household, transportation, or leisure-time activity).No leisure-time physical activityis defined as no reported leisure-time physical activities (i.e., any physical activities or exercises such as running, calisthenics, golf, gardening, or walking) in the previous month. Other Key IssuesCommunity EngagementKnowledge about How to Grow foodFarmers of Tomorrow?Environmental ResourcesGreen SpaceFinancial ResourcesEconomic Development

Grow your own $2149.15 worth of fresh, organic food on 1/25th of an acre!834 lbs of food over six months


Obamas!Statisticsshow that the Obamas and White House staff were able to convert an initial out-of-pocket investment of $200 into over a half ton of fresh, chemical free produce. Imagine the savings the country could make if millions of Americans followed their example thisgrowing season. - Roger Doiron, Kitchen Gardeners International GardensAny piece of land gardened by a group of people

American Community Gardening AssociationThe central element of the definition of this is that the property or place is not owned by the gardeners, but owned by someone else, but that people collectively and/or communally garden on that land for an array of purposes including, food security/access, exercise and well being, education (direct or indirect), and develoment of sense of community - or collective purpose. So...w/o a great definition, we believe that it has in its definition, place, people, plants/food. 7

Benefits of Community GardensStimulates Social Interaction, Community Organizing and Community EngagementPRODUCES Nutritious FOOD! Encourages Communitys Food SecurityIncreases Access to Nutritious Food Improves the Health of the Community and Its PeopleBeautifies NeighborhoodsPreserves Green SpacesCreates Opportunities for Exercise, Therapy, Education and Recreation

Steps to Starting a Community GardenOrganizeCommittee of people resources, landfunding, structurePlan Site design: sunshine, water, shade, security, children, disabled individuals Prepare Develop site, purchase equipmentCommunicateDetermine guidelines, community outreachCommunity Garden ModelsOn Personal Property: Oakhurst Community Garden - Decatur, GAAs a City Park: Two Rivers Community Garden and Dunbar Garden Project - Little Rock, ARInitiated by Individuals, Neighborhoods, Communities, For-Profit and Non-ProfitOwned by an Institution: College Campuses, Hospitals, Private CompaniesOn school grounds: School Gardens

Decatur, Georgia: womens home garden trampled by local kids going home from schools so she transformed it into a community garden invited kids in to grow the garden with her.

10Child Health TrendsNationally, approximately 16% of children and adolescents ages 6-19 years are overweight or obese. When an individual is overweight as a child, he or she is more likely to be overweight as an adult, causing higher risks of health problems.In Arkansas, approximately 38% of public school-age children and adolescents are overweight or obese.In 2009, less than 10% of youth, grades 9-12 consumed fruit 2 times per day and vegetables 3 times per dayLess than 24% consumed fruit 2 times per dayLess than 10% consumed vegetables 3 times per day

As we know. Its not only adults who suffer from high rates of obesity. Unlike the past when childrens dietary guidelines were aimed at nutrient deficiencies and under-consumption, now the American Dietetic Association is concerned with rising rates of overweight and obese children caused by increases in energy intake, larger portion sizes and lower levels of physical activity. REFERENCESAmerican Dietetic Association (2008). Position of the American Dietetic Association: Nutrition guidance for healthy children ages 2 to11 years. Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 108(6), 1038-1047.

Health problems that arise from being overweight or obese are often long-term, chronic illnesses such as Type 2 diabetes, stroke, cancer, and osteoporosis.

Engeland, A., Bjorge, T., Tverdal, A., Sogaard, AJ. (2004). Obesity in adolescence and adulthood and the risk of adult mortality. Epidemiology, 15, 79-85.

11 Farm to SchoolFarm to school (FTS) is a national movement to bring healthy, locally grown produce to school children in order to improve child health, strengthen family farms and support community-based food systems.Farm to School programs emphasize the use of multiple social and physical environments to both educate and teach new life skills that encourage and reinforce healthy eating behaviors.

One comprehensive, school-based response to low fruit and vegetable intake in youth has been the farm to school movement.

Jaramillo, A., Ratcliffe, M. Powerpoint: A Model for Garden-based Nutrition Education: School Garden and Farm to School Program Evaluation in San Francisco, CA & Portland, OR. Last accessed on December 9, 2009 at

12School GardensOn school groundsInvolves students in the creation, planting, tending and harvestingFor educational, health, and social enrichment purposesTo promote a sense of community

Our working definttion. 13Benefits of School GardensIncrease access to fresh fruits and vegetablesIncrease knowledge, preferences, willingness to taste and intake of vegetablesEnhance academic curriculaAnecdotal evidence of increased school bondingPotential to decrease student delinquency, substance abuse and school drop-out


School Garden ModelsEdible School YardDistrict-Wide Models in CaliforniaFelder Farm, Little RockDunbar Garden Project, Little RockDelta Garden Study, Arkansas Delta Region