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NEWS ITEMS


Learning Gardens across New York
Detail: "Learning gardens" are sprouting up all over New York City with the support of Mayor Bloomberg and an array of community and nonprofit groups, including TV host Rachael Ray's Yum-o! nutrition-boosting foundation. They're being built for youngsters at a growing number of schools, and off-school sites, to provide them with a two-fold lesson: how to grow healthy food and how to eat healthy food.

Agriculture Commissioner Patrick Hooker noted that a statewide school-garden survey last year identified 377 schools that "have gardens in one way, shape or form," and 306 of those are in New York City.

Kids are involved in growing a variety of vegetables that are then used in food preparation in their cafeteria. In one of the new initiatives announced by the mayor, the "Garden to Cafe" program will expand to 25 or more schools in the new school year. Also, with support from Rachae Ray, the city will launch cooking and nutritional pilot programs this summer and fall at city Housing Authority developments, in partnership with the Sylvia Center, a children's nutrition advocacy group, and the Children's Aid Society.

In addition, mini-grants of $500 to $1,000 will be made available this fall for schools that need funds to start a garden. And a teen intern program is being launched to tend school gardens over the summer.
Source: “Green thumbs in school, TV's Rachael Ray joins mayor to push growing & eating healthy” by Frank Lombardi, Daily News (New York), May 17, 2010
Date: June 12 2010