Cultivating Community in partnership with FoodCorps has provided garden-based education, teacher support, and teaching at three Portland elementary schools—Riverton Elementary School, Reiche Elementary School, and East End Elementary School in Portland. We also manage a networking group that brings together garden educators to share ideas, instructional strategies, and resources.
In addition, we’ve collaborated with both LearningWorks and FoodCorps to facilitate garden clubs at these three elementary schools, as well as at Hall Elementary School in Portland.
Cultivating Community has a long relationship with the Food Service Department of Portland Public Schools (PPS). In collaboration with PPS and the (former) Mayor’s Committee for a Healthy, Sustainable Food System, we worked to increase student participation in the school lunch program and also supported PPS in communicating with parents and students so that their expectations could be met regarding the food that students want to eat at school. Finally, we worked to help increase the percentage of healthy local foods that are featured in the school meals program. We also collaborated with FoodsCorps to offer tastings of healthy foods in the school environment.
Additionally, we worked with Portland, Deering, and Casco Bay High Schools, as well as Baxter Academy, providing opportunities for students at these schools to engage in service learning at local community gardens.