Learning Gardens Program teaches NYC kids with hands-on education
Sean Jamar for City Parks Foundation
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As a branch of the City Parks Foundation, The Learning Gardens Program (LPG) is science-based and experiential, offering NYC youth an opportunity to understand the importance of urban gardens through hands-on lessons, games and fun science-based activities.

Beginning in October, New York City’s 2nd-8th Graders can participate in a low cost program to teach them about gardening and science.

NYC combats food insecurity in more than 2 dozen neighbohoods

In their fully remote fall program, students will learn concepts relating to plant and soil science, urban biodiversity, food justice and healthy eating. Online tools guide activities in the classroom and are designed to meet the needs of diverse learning styles and abilities in every lesson.

Through the stimulating strategies of exploration and real work, LPG is committed to helping teachers and students meet academic objectives, mandated science curricula and the New York State Science Learning Standards.

Black and brown families are more likely to face food insecurity or live in food deserts, or areas without affordable or good-quality fresh groceries. This can lead to poorer health outcomes, and compound on other systemic inequities.

In Black neighborhoods, food deserts exacerbate health and wellness gaps

Beyond NYC, according to the 2019 Milwaukee Fresh Food Access Report, distance from supermarkets correlates with higher rates of obesity, heart disease and diabetes.

“The main thing we’ve learned in the past 5 to 10 years is that just building a grocery store is not a one-size-fits-all solution to community access needs,” said Laine Cidlowski, the food system administrator for the city of Denver.

Learning Gardens teaches Black and brown youth of NYC to rehabilitate community gardens in low-income communities and learn how to continue to care for them.Food sovereignty and the right to healthy food are a priority for the program as the organization wants children of color to feel empowered to feed themselves in a nourishing and sustainable way.

For more information on Learning Gardens school program or to become a partner, please contact srose@cityparksfoundation.org. To apply for entry into the program, you can click here.

Hailing from Charlotte North Carolina, born litterateur Ezekiel J. Walker earned a B.A. in Psychology at Winston Salem State University. Walker later published his first creative nonfiction book and has...

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