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National Farm to School Network

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This Week in farm to school: 12/6/16

NFSN Staff Tuesday, December 06, 2016

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. USDA Farm to School Grant RFA - due this week!
USDA has announced  the release of the FY 2017 Farm to School Grant Program Request for Applications. Up to $5 million in grant funds is available to help schools create or strengthen farm to school programs this school year. Awards ranging from $20,000 to $100,000 will be distributed in four different grant categories: Planning, Implementation, Support Service, and Training.  Applications are due by December 8, 2016. Learn more here

2. KidsGardening 2017 Youth Garden Grants
The 2017 Youth Garden Grant is an award designed to support school and youth educational garden projects that enhance the quality of life for students and their communities. Any nonprofit, school, or youth program in the United States planning a new garden program or expanding an established one that serves at least 15 youth between the ages of 3 and 18 is eligible to apply. A total of 20 programs will be awarded. Applications are due December 15, 2016. Learn more here

3. Carton 2 Garden 2017 Contest
Evergreen Packaging and KidsGardening.org are proud to present its third annual national Carton 2 Garden Contest. Open to public and private schools, contest winners will be selected based on their implementation of an innovative garden creation featuring creative and sustainable uses for repurposed milk and juice cartons. Fourteen entries will be selected to receive award packages for their efforts. Submissions are due April 12, 2017. Learn more here


Webinars & Events
1. Webinar: Sourcing and Storing Local, Fresh Foods for School Breakfast 
December 8, 3pm ET
Are you seeking out new ways to increase the use of fresh, local goods in your School Breakfast Program? Hear best practices for sourcing local dairy, grains, proteins, fruits and vegetables for school breakfast. Learn the strategies for maximizing the shelf life of these food products and how incorporating local foods can boost student satisfaction with the program. Hosted by FRAC. Register here

2. Webinar: How States are Leveraging Medicaid to Expand Health Services in Schools
December 15, 1-2pm CT
The Healthy Students, Promising Futures Learning Collaborative includes a growing number of state teams from Departments of Education and Medicaid who are exploring ways to expand health services in schools and leverage funding through Medicaid. The Collaborative is supported by the U.S. Department of Education, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, in partnership with Healthy Schools Campaign (HSC) and Trust for America’s Health (TFAH). This webinar will provide an overview of the Collaborative and highlight preliminary findings, successes and challenges that the state teams are facing. Register here

3. Webinar: January NFSN Farm to ECE Webinar: Good Food, Great Kids Project 
January 11, 3:30-5pm ET
pfc Social Impact Advisors, in partnership with the National Farm to School Network and the BUILD Initiative, recently developed a series of case studies on the emerging benefits of farm to early care and education (farm to ECE) initiatives. These case studies, along with the accompanying policy report, explore the policy and practice of how communities are joining forces to bring farm to ECE programs to vulnerable children and families. Join us to hear from Hilda Vega, Vice President of Programs at pfc Social Impact Advisors, about the important lessons gleaned from the project and from the team at Norris Square Community Alliance, one of the featured case studies, about how their farm to ECE model is supporting equity and inclusion in the ECE setting. Register here


Jobs & Opportunities
1. Fruits & Veggies-More Matter Public Health Role Model or Champion
Are you seeking recognition for all of your efforts around increasing the consumption of fruits and vegetables in your schools and communities? The Fruits & Veggies-More Matters Campaign (Produce for Better Health Foundation) is an opportunity to be recognized for your work promoting the consumption of fruits and vegetables in your schools and communities. Farmers/Agricultural Producers, Industry/Retail Professionals, Public Health Educators, and School Food Service employees can all be nominated as Role Models or Champions. Applications must be submitted by Jan. 5, 2017. More information can be found here


Farm to school in the news
New York Awards $500,00 for Farm to School Programs
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has announced that $500,000 has been awarded to seven farm to school projects across New York State to increase the amount of healthy, locally grown foods offered on school menus. The projects, funded through the State’s Farm-to-School Program, will benefit nearly 300,000 students. Read more here

Providing Locally-Grown Food To Vermont Prison Kitchens
Some of Vermont's prisoners are helping to prepare Vermont-raised foods for their fellow inmates as part of a new "farm-to-prison" program. The food service that is used by some Vermont prison kitchens is run by a Newport-based organization, Green Mountain Farm-to-School. Vermont Public Radio 

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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