Walmart Foundation Awards Apple Seeds with Grant, Improving Student Access to Nutrition Education and Fresh Produce

NEWS RELEASE
September 21, 2015
For Immediate Release
FAYETTEVILLE, AR – The Walmart Foundation provided Apple Seeds, a local education non-profit, with the funds to support its school garden educational programs. Through the grant, Apple Seeds is able to provide students with nutrition education and access to fresh fruits and vegetables through student-led garden markets.
“This grant enables Apple Seeds to provide weekly nutrition education and school garden markets at two partner schools -- Helen Tyson Middle School and Bayyari Elementary School. We’re excited to see how the students’ excitement over preparing fresh food influences their eating choices,” said Mary Thompson, Co-Executive Director, Apple Seeds.
Student Garden Markets
During the spring and summer, students from Bayyari Elementary, Helen Tyson Middle School and the Boys and Girls Club hosted garden markets.These student-led markets allow the students to promote and distribute vegetables to their peers in a similar fashion as a farmer’s market. The vegetables are grown from their garden and supplemented by produce from the Apple Seeds Teaching Farm.
As a result of those markets, over 1,300 students gained access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Student surveys report that more than 40% of the students who attended the garden markets replicated the healthy snacks at home. “This surpassed our goal by over 20%,” remarked Thompson. These markets are opportunities for students to create access points and enthusiasm for fresh produce. The students promote their produce to their peers, engage and educate the community, sample fresh snacks, and apply new knowledge of nutrition. Produce comes from the school gardens and is supplemented by the Apple Seeds Teaching Farm.
The weekly student garden markets start up this fall. Please join us at the following markets:
Helen Tyson Middle School
3304 S 40th Street, Springdale
October 6 -- 1:30-3:30pm
October 13 -- 5:30pm
ABOUT APPLE SEEDS
For nearly 10 years Apple Seeds has been serving Northwest Arkansas. In that time the organization has made great strides, positively impacting the community—student surveys show improved attitudes toward healthy food, and heightened knowledge of nutrition. Apple Seeds provides a variety of programs, including Farm Lab, gardening clubs, student garden markets, and school garden workshops. For more information visit www.appleseedsnwa.org.
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If you would like more information, please contact Kyra Ramsey by phone or email: 847.736.1633 | kyra@appleseedsnwa.org.  

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