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National Farm to School Network

News

This Week in Farm to School: 11/28/17

NFSN Staff Tuesday, November 28, 2017
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 FY 2018 Farm to School Grant RFA 
The USDA FY 2018 Farm to School Request for Applications (RFA) is now open. On an annual basis, USDA awards up to $5 million in competitive grants for training, supporting operations, planning, purchasing equipment, developing school gardens, developing partnerships, and implementing farm to school programs. Applications are due Dec. 8, 2017. Learn more here

2. Voices for Healthy Kids (VFHK) Grant 
Voices for Healthy Kids (VFHK) has opened a new round of funding to specifically support school health at the state and local level. Applications are due Dec. 8, 2017 and must be focused in passing policy related to these specific issue areas: Physical Education, School Marketing, Wellness Policies, School Food – Meals & Smart Snacks standards, Water Access. Watch this webinar for more information. 

3. Farm Asset Builder
Farm Asset Builder is an Individual Development Account (IDA) matched savings program. Farmers work with Angelic Organics Learning Center and partners to improve their financial and business planning skills, while also saving a monthly portion of their earned farm income that will then be MATCHED! Savings will then be used to purchase items (or assets) that help grow your farm business.  Application period ends Friday, December 8, 2017. Read more and apply


Webinars

1. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics: Youth Engagement through Farm to School
December 7 // 2-3pm ET
Farm to school initiatives across the country are changing the way young people view and consume fresh, local foods and interact with their community. This month’s focus on youth engagement through farm to school will highlight unique approaches and initiatives to engage youth in their communities and food systems and empower youth to be leaders and active voices in the farm to school movement. Join us for the webinar to hear speakers from as they discuss initiatives, best practices, resources and more to boost youth engagement in farm to school. Register here

2. NFSN WEBINAR Farm to ECE Quarterly Webinar: Placing Equity at the Center of Farm to Early Care and Education

January 9, 2018 // 3-4:15pm ET
At the intersection of multiple sectors, including policy, education, food systems and social justice, farm to early care and education (farm to ECE) can be a platform for advancing racial and social equity. Access to farm to ECE opportunities may be one approach to addressing health and education inequities by increasing access to healthy, local foods and high-quality education opportunities for children and communities while promoting ECE policies that address inequity. Farm to ECE can, at the same time, address inequities in the food system by changing ECE purchasing practices and policies. Join the National Farm to School Network, the Policy Equity Group, the Food Trust, and the Center for Environmental Farming Systems to learn how these organizations are both evaluating internal structures and practices to prioritize equity and working towards programs and policies that place equity at the center of farm to ECE initiatives. Register here.


Events

1. National Farmers Union Online Conference
December 4-7
This FREE four-day online conference is focused on developing agricultural leaders from all backgrounds, and provides an opportunity for beginning farmers to acquire the skills they need to run a successful operation. The conference will highlight leaders in the field of agriculture and focus on building a network for beginning farmers and ranchers throughout the country. Register here.

2. Future Harvest CASA's Conference
January 11-13 // College Park, Maryland
The program for Future Harvest CASA's 19th Annual Cultivate the Chesapeake
Foodshed Conference is up and registration is open. This conference offers over 40 sessions and pre-conference workshops; three nationally renowned keynotes -- Gabe Brown, Michael Twitty, and Ira Wallace -- farmer-to-farmer chats and quick-learn "lightning rounds." Register here

3. National Child Nutrition Conference

April 19-21, 2018 // San Antonio, TX
Scholarship applications for the 2018 National Child Nutrition Conference is open now through Wednesday January 24, 2018. Fifteen winners will receive complimentary conference registration, lodging and $300 towards travel. The recipients will be selected by the conference committee and notified by February 9, 2018. Scholarships are available in all the following categories: CACFP Sponsoring Agency, Head Start, School District, Food Bank, Tribal Nation, At-Risk/Afterschool, Summer Food, Child Care Center/Home Provider. Learn more.


Resources & Research
1. First Nation Institute's New Nutrition Education Toolkit for FDPIR
The First Nations Institute has launched a new FDPIR Nutrition Education Toolkit. The toolkit provides resources to help Native communities prepare healthy and tasty meals using the foods available through the FDPIR program. It contains free educational resources, including several cookbooks, videos featuring traditional foods and cooking methods, and additional materials on traditional, ancestral beverages. One of the featured resources is the First Nations cookbook, titled Cooking Healthier with FDPIR Foods, which provides healthy recipes using foods found in the FDPIR food package. 

2. Results and Recommendations from the 2017 National Young Farmer Survey
America’s farmers are retiring and need replacements. But who will take their place? A new survey by the National Young Farmers Coalition finds that today’s young farmers are doing things differently than generations past. They are operating smaller farms, growing more diverse crops, selling directly to consumers, committed to sustainable and conservation-minded farming practices, highly educated, primarily female, increasingly racially diverse, and optimistic about the future. Learn more about the challenges they face and opportunities for policy reform to support them by reading the report here: www.youngfarmers.org/survey2017

3. Study: Impact of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act on School Breakfast & Lunch Participation Rates
A new study published in the American Journal of Public Health evaluated National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program participation over a 7-year period before and after the implementation of the 2010 Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act (HHFKA), which required healthier school lunch options beginning in school year (SY) 2012–2013 and healthier school breakfast options beginning in SY2013–2014. Results from the study find that the HHFKA did not have a a negative impact on school meal participation over time. Read more

4. Article & Research: Becoming (and Remaining) a Farmer is Hard

Civil Eats looks at the new academic research that suggests the 2014 Farm Bill’s efforts to support beginning farmer initiatives may not have been effective for addressing many of the obstacles beginning farmers face, including access to land, student loan debt, and, in the case of farmers of color, discrimination from predominantly white land owners in this country. Many farmer advocacy groups say the biggest issues facing beginning farmers are more structural and systemic than a lack of skills. “These structural barriers—whether rooted in informal social networks or systemic ethnocentrism, hold back some beginning farmers who otherwise energetically apply themselves to overcoming their individual knowledge deficits.” Read more.  


Job Opportunities

1.Working Lands Alliance Project Director, American Farmland Trust
American Farmland Trust seeks an energetic self-starter to lead Connecticut’s Working Lands Alliance (WLA). This is a telework position and requires extensive travel throughout Connecticut and occasional travel elsewhere in the region. Read more here

2. Midwest Cover Crop Assistant, Practical Farmers of Iowa
Practical Farmers of Iowa is seeking an experienced professional to serve as our Midwest Cover Crop Assistant who will work directly with the growing PFI Cover Crop Team. Read more here


Farm to School in the News

In New Jersey, garden recess continues to grow
“There​ ​are​ ​some​ ​students​ ​who​ ​come​ ​to​ ​the​ ​garden​ ​every​ ​week​​ ​​​simply​ ​to make​ ​a​ ​connection,​ ​to talk​ ​and​ ​play​ ​quietly​ ​with​ ​the​ ​adults​ ​or​ ​other​ ​children​ ​in​ ​the garden. Others​ love​ ​to​ ​​search​ ​in​ ​the​ ​compost​ ​and​ ​under rocks​ ​and​ ​logs​​ ​for​ ​insects,​ ​salamanders ​and​ ​snakes.”​ Some students run ​into​ ​the​ ​garden to​ ​pull​ ​a​ ​carrot,​ ​paint​ ​a​ ​picture​ ​or​ ​taste​ ​some​ ​food​ ​before returning ​to​ ​their​ ​recess​ ​play. (Village Green NJ)

Alabama school partners with local restaurant on herb project

Students at the Dothan Technology Center will plant herbs, tend to them as they grow, then sell them to a local restaurant at market price. "The basis of it is to allow special needs and at risk students the ability to start doing tasks and jobs that can help them perform when they reach adulthood." (Dothan First)

In Michigan, students and families celebrate Thanksgiving tradition

The annual Thanksgiving tradition at the Grand Haven school is based on the book, “Stone Soup.” In the book, townspeople share their food to make a meal for everyone. In addition to donated ingredients, students harvested their school garden for items such as potatoes, parsley, kale, onion, oregano, turnips and carrots. The kids also made bread and butter to accompany the soup. (Grand Haven Tribune)

New York middle school students host harvest dinner
Eighth-grade students at Saranac Lake Middle School entertained their parents at the Harvest Dinner with an array of projects focused on sustainability, pollution and taking care of the earth. (Adirondack Daily Enterprise)


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.

This Week in Farm to School: 11/21/17

NFSN Staff Tuesday, November 21, 2017
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. Voices for Healthy Kids (VFHK) Grant 
Voices for Healthy Kids (VFHK) has opened a new round of funding to specifically support school health at the state and local level. Applications are due COB 12/8/17 and must be focused in passing policy related to these specific issue areas: Physical Education, School Marketing, Wellness Policies, School Food – Meals & Smart Snacks standards, Water Access. Watch this webinar for more information. 

2. National Child Nutrition Conference
April 19-21, 2018 // San Antonio, TX
Scholarship applications for the 2018 National Child Nutrition Conference is open now through Wednesday January 24, 2018. Fifteen winners will receive complimentary conference registration, lodging and $300 towards travel. The recipients will be selected by the conference committee and notified by February 9, 2018. Scholarships are available in all the following categories: CACFP Sponsoring Agency, Head Start, School District, Food Bank, Tribal Nation, At-Risk/Afterschool, Summer Food, Child Care Center/Home Provider. Learn more


Webinars & Events
1. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics: Youth Engagement through Farm to School
December 7 // 2-3pm ET
Farm to school initiatives across the country are changing the way young people view and consume fresh, local foods and interact with their community. This month’s focus on youth engagement through farm to school will highlight unique approaches and initiatives to engage youth in their communities and food systems and empower youth to be leaders and active voices in the farm to school movement. Join us for the webinar to hear speakers from as they discuss initiatives, best practices, resources and more to boost youth engagement in farm to school. Register here

2. National Farmers Union Online Conference
December 4-7
This FREE four-day online conference is focused on developing agricultural leaders from all backgrounds, and provides an opportunity for beginning farmers to acquire the skills they need to run a successful operation. The conference will highlight leaders in the field of agriculture and focus on building a network for beginning farmers and ranchers throughout the country. Register here

3. Registration Open: 21st Annual Georgia Organics Conference & Expo. 

Feb. 16-17, 2018 // Augusta, GA
Over two days, be inspired, connected, refreshed, invigorated and challenged at the 21st Annual Georgia Organics Conference and Expo. Farmers will share techniques, hacks and acumen that lift farmer productivity and prosperity. Educators will inspire with stories of kids loving broccoli. Advocates will rally us to fight for just and clean food. Augustans will tour us around their healthy food oasis. Exhibitors will show off the latest and greatest. And we will eat good and beautiful food grown by the ultimate stewards of land, flavor and joy. Come see why food is the answer! Learn more and register here


Resources & Research
1. Updated Resource: State Farm to School Legislative Survey: 2002-2017
Farm to school policies have been a key strategy for making local food procurement, food education and school gardens a reality for millions of children. To support the continued growth of state policy advocacy, the National Farm to School Network updated one its signature resources that tracks how farm to school supportive-bills strengthening the farm to school movement. The State Farm to School Legislative Survey: 2002-2017 offers a state-by-state review of every proposed farm to school policy since 2002, analysis of legislative trends, case studies of successful advocacy efforts and other resources for those working to advance farm to school in their communities.

2. Food from Farms: Toolkit for Direct Purchasing of Local Food

The Food from Farms: Toolkit for Direct Purchasing of Local Food provides examples and templates to start community-based local food procurement directly from farmers. The toolkit was originally developed for a small school district in northern Minnesota, and was designed to comply with USDA guidelines.The toolkit is adaptable and has been used for local food procurement by a hospital and a non-profit organization. 

3. Healthy Food Policy Project
The Healthy Food Policy Project (HFPP) identifies and elevates local laws that seek to promote access to healthy food, and also contribute to strong local economies, an improved environment, and health equity, with a focus on socially disadvantaged and marginalized groups. Learn more here

4. Dolores Huerta is Still Fighting for Farmworkers’ Rights
Dolores Huerta is having a bit of a celebrity moment. It began in 2012, when President Obama gave her the Presidential Medal of Freedom award for coining the slogan “Sí, Se Puede,” an early predecessor to his own campaign slogan, “Yes, We Can.” Now, she’s the subject of a documentary, “Dolores,” which was conceived of and produced by Carlos Santana, directed by Peter Bratt, and is screening around the country this fall. But the 87-year-old community organizer is far from your typical celebrity. Learn more


Policy Updates

1. Beginning Farmer and Rancher Opportunity Act
A bipartisan coalition led by Representatives Tim Walz (D-MN) and Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE) has introduced the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Opportunity Act (BFROA) of 2017. This bill will ensure that the 2018 Farm Bill focuses on the future of American agriculture by driving investment toward programs and policies that create opportunities for the next generation of farmers and ranchers. Learn more here

2. Food Policy Report Card for U.S. Congress Shows Lack of Action
Food Policy Action (FPA) has released its 2017 National Food Policy Scorecard to help the public track actions taken by lawmakers in the US Congress. “While this year’s Scorecard shows a weak Congressional agenda on food policy, this is only a midterm score,” said FPA Executive Director Monica Mills. “Congress has a huge opportunity to show leadership on these issues as we move into discussions ahead of the 2018 Farm Bill. It is our job to hold them accountable during the next election cycle.” Read more

3. Letter Sent to Appropriations on School Equipment Grant

The National Farm to School Network has signed on to a joint letter that was sent to Senate and House Appropriations Committee leaders on behalf of organizations committed to ensuring students receive fresh, healthy food daily through federal school meal programs. The letter offers support for the language included in the House of Representatives Fiscal Year 2018 Agriculture Appropriations bill, which lowers the threshold for U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) School Kitchen Equipment Grant purchases from $5,000 to $1,000. This year’s USDA School Kitchen Grant program is seeking $30 million in the appropriations bill, which is vital since nearly 90% of schools need at least one piece of updated equipment. 


Job Opportunities

1. Communications Director, Pesticide Action Network
Pesticide Action Network (PAN) is seeking a passionate, pragmatic and innovative Communications Director. This is an 80% position — 4 days/week —  located in either PAN’s Berkeley or Minneapolis office. Read more here

2. Director of Development, Georgia Organics
Georgia Organics is seeking to hire a full-time Director of Development. The Director of Development is responsible for leading, planning, and accelerating fund development while fostering a culture of philanthropy within the organization. Learn more here

3. Año Nuevo Farm Director, Pie Ranch
Pie Ranch is seeking a full-time, year round Farm Director for 68 acres at the Año Nuevo site (approximately 30 acres row crop production and 30 acres of pasture). Its current integrated crop and livestock production focus is on diverse coastal vegetables, grains and legumes, as well as cattle and poultry with subleases on the pasture land. Learn more here


Farm to School in the News

Farm to School: Oklahoma students learning to eat and grow fresh veggies and fruits
"You’ve heard the concept ‘Farm to Table’ where high-end restaurants bring local produce to the dinner table. What about bringing that same organic food to the classroom? That’s what Muskogee Public Schools is doing with its ‘Farm to School’ program designed to teach students about health eating choices." (KJRH)

Green School Farms grows for schools in Nebraska
 

"We have a passion for providing local, health food to the schools to get kids excited about eating healthier." (LNKTV Health)

Arkansas school garden greens ready for harvest

Earlier this year they planted turnips, collard greens and mustard greens in a school garden. Now, the plants are ready to harvest. East Initiative students were in the garden Thursday, picking the produce. (Arkansas Matters)

Wisconsin elementary school kicks-off gardening program with Native American food presentation
A Native American chef recently visited Hintgen Elementary for food taste tests and demonstrations. The event marked the beginning of GROW La Crosse's gardening program at the school. The organization will also install and maintain a school garden for Hintgen through the program. (News8000)

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.



This Week in Farm to School: 11/14/17

NFSN Staff Tuesday, November 14, 2017
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. 

Webinars & Events

1. Carrying the Message of Farmers: Lobbying for Change on Behalf of Farmers Interests
November 14 // 12-1:15pm ET
The Chesapeake Foodshed Network presents this webinar as a part of their Fall Policy Series. These webinars with follow up Q&A are designed for Food Policy Councils, grassroots coalitions, young farmer coalitions, nonprofit food and farm organizations, and food and farm lobbyists. Register here

2. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics: Youth Engagement through Farm to School
December 7 // 2-3pm ET
Farm to school initiatives across the country are changing the way young people view and consume fresh, local foods and interact with their community. This month’s focus on youth engagement through farm to school will highlight unique approaches and initiatives to engage youth in their communities and food systems and empower youth to be leaders and active voices in the farm to school movement. Join us for the webinar to hear speakers from as they discuss initiatives, best practices, resources and more to boost youth engagement in farm to school. Register here

3. Beginning Farmer Rancher Development Program Application Process

December 12 // 1pm ET
Join this webinar led by New Entry staff as we walk through the various components of application submission for your BFRDP grant. This webinar will cover aspects of the application package as well as navigating grants.gov. Register here

4. Oregon Farm to School and School Garden Summit

January 25-26, 2018 // Silverton, Oregon
Registration is now open for the Oregon Farm to School and School Garden Summit. Join this two day conference with workshops, speakers, resources and networking opportunities to learn about farm and garden based education and incorporating local food in school meals. Learn more here


Action Items

1. Last call for workshop & poster proposals - 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference
Today, Tuesday, Nov. 14, is the last day to submit workshop and poster ideas for the 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference, coming to Cincinnati, OH, April 25-27, 2018. Individuals and organizations working to to improve our food system, strengthen community health, empower youth, advance equity and increase opportunities for farmers are encouraged to submit proposals. The submission deadline is 8pm ET on Tuesday, Nov. 14. Learn more here

2. Join the FoodCorps Action Alert List

 You’re already an evangelist for healthy food in schools and now there is another way you can be a voice for change. FoodCorps has launched an Action Center where you can sign on to support policies and actions that will ensure kids can grow up healthy and reach their full potential. Visit the Action Center or join their action alert list today by texting FOODCORPS to 52886.

3. Help compiling list of organizations addressing racial equity in food system
New Entry Sustainable Farming Projecting is seeking to compile a list of organizations that are actively implementing initiatives to address racial equity in food systems (as opposed to articles, reading, resources, etc. which there are a lot of as well!). Please, email Kristen Aldrich at Kristen.Aldrich@tufts.edu if you have suggestions. 


Job Opportunities

1. Executive Director, The Vermont Community Garden Network
The Vermont Community Garden Network seeks a full-time Executive Director to be based in Burlington, VT. The ED reports to the Board of Directors, and works with the Board and Staff to establish the mission, vision, strategic plan, and long term sustainability and success of VCGN. Learn more and apply

2. Quality Assurance Specialist, La Montanita Coop. 

The Quality Assurance Specialist maintains all Quality Management Systems related to La Montañita’s Distribution Center (DC). This position also oversees La Montañita’s Group GAP program. Learn more and apply

3. Outreach and Development Director, Southern SAWG

The Southern Sustainable Agriculture Working Group (Southern SAWG) is seeking an Outreach and Development Director to shape the organization’s messaging and build a strong plan for long term funding development. Southern residence is required for the successful candidate. Learn more and apply


Farm to School in the News
Louisiana school garden growing citrus for school lunch

Liberty’s Kitchen has launched a program giving students access to fresh fruits and veggies while educating the community about healthy choices, nutrition and farming. The Liberty’s School Garden is one of three farm-to-school initiatives in development by Liberty’s Kitchen, which serves 3,500 meals a day in partner schools through the School Nutrition Program. (Mid-City Messenger)

New policy language, dedicated coordinator help expand Minnesota school garden efforts

Renee Willemsen was hired to coordinate the various school efforts. She helped write the policy language that seeks to enhance nutritional and educational experiences of kids through the use of locally grown produce and school garden experiences. (Duluth News Tribune)

South Dakota geodome and aquaponics

In 2015, the Wagner school district built a 42-foot long geodome and started an aquaponics program for use in the school's science departments. Since then, students have created a community garden, installed a drainage system and completed various unique projects, prompting South Dakota Public Broadcasting to reach out to high school science teacher and geodome coordinator Carrie Tucek, who spearheaded the project. (Mitchell Republic

75 Georgia school districts win Golden Radish Awards for farm to school accomplishments 

Last month, Georgia farm to school partners came together to celebrate over 40 percent of Georgia school districts with outstanding farm to school programs. Seventy-five school districts, serving more than one million students in Georgia, are now participating in farm to school. The Golden Radish Award publicly recognizes school districts for all aspects of farm to school, from local food procurement to hosting taste tests and gardening with students. (Georgia Organics

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.

This Week in Farm to School: 11/07/17

NFSN Staff Tuesday, November 07, 2017
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 FY 2018 Farm to School Grant RFA 
The USDA FY 2018 Farm to School Request for Applications (RFA) is now open. On an annual basis, USDA awards up to $5 million in competitive grants for training, supporting operations, planning, purchasing equipment, developing school gardens, developing partnerships, and implementing farm to school programs. Applications are due Dec. 8, 2017. Learn more here

2. Annie’s Grants for Gardens

Annie's believes that showing future generations how sustainable food is grown can change their lives. Connecting kids to gardens helps them to start thinking more holistically about their food, their communities, and the planet. Want a garden? Apply today! Applications are due November 11, 2017. Learn more here

3. Carton 2 Garden Contest

Schools can compete to win one of several prize packages by repurposing 100 or more empty milk and juice cartons in their existing school gardens or by creating novel school gardens. Each garden will be judged for its creativity and incorporation of sustainable practices. The deadline for Carton 2 Garden contest submissions is Monday, April 16, 2018. More information about the contest, including its official rules, can be found at www.carton2garden.com.


Events & Webinars
1. Webinar: Planting Garlic & Other Fall Garden Tips
November 9 // 4:30-5:30pm ET
Join Jennica Skoug and Stefanie Bugasch Scopoline from the Wisconsin School Garden Network as they introduce how to plant garlic and discuss fall garden tips and activities. Specific topics will include: mulching and cover cropping, seed saving, fall fruit tree maintenance, preparing perennials for winter, and example fall activities for students from the Goodman Youth Farm program AND of course, planting garlic! Sign-up here

2. Webinar: "Carrying the Message of Farmers: Lobbying for Change on Behalf of Farmers Interests"
November 14 // 12-1:15pm ET
The Chesapeake Foodshed Network presents this webinar as a part of their Fall Policy Series. These webinars with follow up Q&A are designed for Food Policy Councils, grassroots coalitions, young farmer coalitions, nonprofit food and farm organizations, and food and farm lobbyists. Learn more and register here

3. Webinar: Montana Beef to School
November 15 // 4pm ET
Montana Office of Public Instruction invites you to learn about successful strategies for purchasing and serving local beef in Montana schools. This webinar will provide information about the Montana Beef to School Project’s findings and resources as well as give participants the first look at beef to school procurement templates. Participants can join (no preregistration needed) at: http://connect.opi.mt.gov/webinarwednesdays/

4. National Good Food Network Conference and Call for Proposals
March 27-30 2018 // Albuquerque, NM 
The National Good Food Network Conference is the only conference in the US with a central focus on the success of food hubs. This event will convene 500 food hub managers, staff and supporters of all types to dig deep into the nuts and bolts of running hubs, financing, technology, and enhancing their triple bottom line impacts. Learn more about the Call for Conference Proposals here.

5. National Children & Youth Garden Symposium 
July 11-14 2018 // Ithaca, NY
The National Children & Youth Garden Symposium is the only national event of its kind where you can network with like-minded teachers, garden designers, community leaders, program coordinators, and others involved with connecting kids to the natural world.  NCYGS 2018 attendees will have the opportunity to explore topics ranging from curriculum to program management to garden design and maintenance during four dynamic days of educational sessions, field trips, and expert keynote presentations. Learn more here


Action Item
1. Call for Workshop & Poster Proposals - 9th Farm to Cafeteria Conference
The 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference is coming to Cincinnati, OH, April 25-27, 2017! Hosted by the National Farm to School Network, this biennial event will convene more than 1,000 diverse stakeholders working to source local food for institutional cafeterias and foster a culture of food and agricultural literacy across America. Conference organizers are seeking workshop and poster proposals from individuals and organizations working to improve our food system, strengthen community health, empower youth, advance equity and increase opportunities for farmers. Learn more information about proposal submissions here. Proposals are due no later than 8pm ET on Nov. 14, 2017.

2. Wallace Center seeking food systems mentors
Calling all mentors! The Community Based Food Systems Team at the Wallace Center is excited to announce that they’re starting a food systems mentoring program! They are seeking nominations of those individuals you would approach for advice, and who you believe would be interested in “paying it forward” as a mentor. They are also happy to receive applications directly from individuals interested in serving in this capacity. Please click here for more information. Applications are due November 17, 2017.


Resources 

1. Qaqamiiĝux̂: Head Start Traditional Foods Preschool Curriculum
Qaqamiigux: Head Start Traditional Foods Preschool Curriculum” provides a series of lessons and activities that preschool teachers can use to teach the nutritional value of the local, traditional foods in the Aleutian and Pribilof Islands Region. The aim is to provide culturally-relevant nutrition curriculum specific to the foods in the region.

2. Water Footprint Calculator 
Since 2015, GRACE’s award-winning Water Footprint Calculator has helped hundreds of thousands of people figure out how much water they use every day, including both tap water and the virtual water in the food they eat, the energy they use and the products they buy. Now, we’re releasing our updated calculator by combining it with over 100 water saving tips, numerous deep-dive articles about important water footprint topics and multiple resources for educators and students to use in the classroom.


Job Opportunities
1. Professor of Animal Science and Sustainable Agriculture, Warren Wilson College
Warren Wilson College seeks applicants for a full-time faculty position with joint appointment in the Departments of Biology and Environmental Studies. The successful applicant must be able to teach animal anatomy and/or physiology, introductory biology, and animal-related courses in their specialty that will support Warren Wilson College’s thriving Sustainable Agriculture program. Learn more here

2. Executive Director, Amagansett Food Institute

Amagansett Food institute seeks to hire an Executive Director. The mission of the Amagansett Food Institute (AFI) is to support, promote, and advocate for the farmers, vintners, fishermen, and other food producers and providers on the East End of Long Island. Learn more

3. Director of Horticulture, Green City Growers

Green City Growers seeks to hire a Director of Horticulture. The Director of Horticulture oversees the planting and maintenance of GCG’s 125 urban farm sites throughout the greater Boston area. Read more


Farm to School in the News
From Phở to Fajitas, School Lunches Feed a Diverse Nation
Cafeterias have begun to incorporate ingredients like wild rice and buffalo and serve items ranging from poi to fajitas. From Vermont to Hawaii, food service directors across the country are devising an array of solutions to the lack of diversity in school food. Whether through catering to traditional dietary cultures or teaching kids about native foods and their preparation, school food programs are beginning to see their students’ once-marginalized cultural traditions and dietary needs of as a wealth of opportunity. (Civil Eats)

Florida hosts farmers markets for elementary schools

As part of National Farm-to-School month, Chartwells, Bay District Schools’ food service provider, has been hosting farmers markets at elementary schools all across the district, partnering with local farms to expose students to fresh fruit and vegetables. (Panama City News Herald

Las Vegas Farm program lets students learn hands-on from animals

Life sciences teacher Kimberly Law helped start an animal program more than 10 years ago with a couple of snakes, which were offered as a way for students to gain a hands-on, real-life study of the subject. Her class, which she began teaching full-time in 2012, has since expanded to include an “animal lab” classroom with exotic birds, reptiles and rodents, as well as a farm outside with desert tortoises, ducks, chickens and other animals. (Las Vegas Sun)


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.

This Week in Farm to School: 10/31/17

NFSN Staff Tuesday, October 31, 2017
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 FY 2018 Farm to School Grant RFA 
The USDA FY 2018 Farm to School Request for Applications (RFA) is now open. On an annual basis, USDA awards up to $5 million in competitive grants for training, supporting operations, planning, purchasing equipment, developing school gardens, developing partnerships, and implementing farm to school programs. Applications are due Dec. 8, 2017. Learn more here

2. Support available for USDA Farm to School Grant Applicants
The National Farm to School Network advocated for the establishment of the USDA Farm to School Grant Program and is committed to ensuring it reaches the communities that need this funding most. NFSN is available on a consultation basis to provide assistance to potential applicants in the areas of: planning and preparing the application; customized support for Native communities; evaluation; and, focus on early care and education / pre-K. The deadline to express interest in receiving assistance from the National Farm to School Network on a consultation basis is November 8, 2017. Learn more here


Events & Webinars
1. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics Webinar: Harvest of the Month 
Thursday, November 2 // 2-3pm ET
States across the country are developing Harvest of the Month programs including curriculum and resources to make it easier for schools, teachers, students and families to join in on farm to school fun. Though different from state to state, Harvest of the Month programs generally highlight a new seasonal product each month with activities, recipes, growing tips and many more resources designed to engage stakeholders and celebrate seasonal, local food. Join us for the National Farm to School Network’s November Trending Topics Webinar where we will hear from four different states about their Harvest of the Month journey. Learn about successful initiatives, best practices, and resources for developing or implementing Harvest of the Month in your school or even across your state. Register here.

2. North Carolina Food Council Gathering
Nov. 30 - Dec. 1 // Bermuda Run, NC
It’s time for another Statewide Food Council Gathering to celebrate the successes of the growing network of food councils across North Carolina!  Join us in building a network, strategy, and collective skills to improve our community’s food system. This event is being hosted in collaboration with the North Carolina Local Food Council and several local food councils across North Carolina. Register here
3. Beginning Farmer and Rancher Online Virtual Conference
December 4-7 
Join the National Farmers Union for their annual, nationally focused online conference: Growing for the Future. This FREE four-day online conference is focused on developing agricultural leaders from all backgrounds, and provides an opportunity for beginning farmers to acquire the skills they need to run a successful operation. Register here


Action Items
1. Call for Workshop & Poster Proposals - 9th Farm to Cafeteria Conference
The 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference is coming to Cincinnati, OH, April 25-27,2017! Hosted by the National Farm to School Network, this biennial event will convene more than 1,000 diverse stakeholders working to source local food for institutional cafeterias and foster a culture of food and agricultural literacy across America. Conference organizers are seeking workshop and poster proposals from individuals and organizations working to improve our food system, strengthen community health, empower youth, advance equity and increase opportunities for farmers. Learn more information about proposal submissions here. Proposals are due no later than 8pm ET on Nov. 14, 2017.


Resources & Research
1. Race and Food are Intertwined. Here’s How We Can Do Better.
“We spend as little as 6 to 12 percent of our disposable income on food. That is usually quoted as something that we should be very proud of. But it should be a national shame,” Ricardo Salvador (NFSN Advisor Board and senior scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists) said. “It’s as if the workers involved in the food industry and nature that is required to produce the food were costs to be minimized…We need to find a way in which we actually value all of those resources—the land and the people that are involved.” One of the long-simmering questions facing those striving for better food for all is how to go beyond voting with your fork? Is it possible to create a new food system that does not rely on exploitation? Read more here

2. University of Michigan 2017 Sustainable Food Systems Progress Report
The University of Michigan is in a unique position as a non-land-grant, tier-1 research institution with a strong and growing foundation in transdisciplinary sustainable food systems work. This report highlights the impacts from the collaboration of several different campus partners including: Research and Teaching (UM Sustainable Food Systems Initiative), Student Leadership (UM Sustainable Food Program), UM Campus Farm, and Dining and Operations. Read more

3. New Organic Management Resource Available from SARE
SARE’s new Organic Production topic room assists organic producers who are struggling to manage pests, fertility and tillage in compliance with stringent organic standards. Including a wide range of free materials developed by SARE, SARE grant recipients and experts in the field. 


Job Opportunities
1. Multiple Positions, NASDA
NASDA grows and enhances agriculture by forging partnerships and creating consensus to achieve sound policy outcomes between state departments of agriculture, the federal government, and stakeholders. The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture is seeking a Public Policy Coordinator and an Associate Director for Public Policy to be based in DC. 

2. Agriculture Specialist/ outreach Coordinator, NCAT Northeast Region
The National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) is seeking an Agriculture Specialist/Outreach Coordinator who can create and distribute outreach communications for communities in the Northeast region.  The specialist will assist farmers in adopting sustainable agricultural practices to build healthier and more profitable farms and communities while helping to improve environmental conditions for all. Learn more here

3. Teaching Farm Manager, North Country School

North Country School and Camp Treetops seek a full-time Teaching Farm Manager to oversee a year-round farm program intended for both food production and education of middle school aged children. Learn more and apply


Farm to School in the News
Kentucky kids grow and prepare their own food
Barren County Schools celebrated National Farm to School Month today, with a Local Brunch for Lunch meal. "We had the kids make breakfast casseroles like I said, with the herbs and the peppers from the garden. We also used some leeks from the garden too, which was really neat because the kids had not had experience with that before." (WBKO)

Pennsylvania Family-Consumer Sciences Students Plant, Harvest, Cook Fresh Produce 
Students taking Family and Consumer Sciences classes at Radnor Middle School have a new source for ingredients in the meals they make in class, as a new garden outside the classroom has been providing them with produce they planted, harvested, and cooked with themselves. (Patch.com)

Why Indiana schools need gardens!

Growing food is as important a life skill as managing money, maintaining a car, or successfully interviewing for a job; and doing this, at school, through the act of tending a garden is a perfectly perfect way to teach sustainability and use one’s own place to allow rich learning experiences to occur. (Getting Smart)

New Jersey students learn about fresh food through Farm to School Month

How does food get into your lunchbox or onto your plate? Students in schools across the region are finding out through demonstrations and taste-tests with local chefs as part of National Farm to School Month. “I think it’s so quickly that we all forget what it takes to get food to the table or to the cafeteria,” said Laura Englemann, community health and wellness manager for AtlantiCare. (Press of Atlantic City)


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.

This Week in Farm to School: 10/24/17

NFSN Staff Tuesday, October 24, 2017
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 FY 2018 Farm to School Grant RFA 
The USDA FY 2018 Farm to School Request for Applications (RFA) is now open. On an annual basis, USDA awards up to $5 million in competitive grants for training, supporting operations, planning, purchasing equipment, developing school gardens, developing partnerships, and implementing farm to school programs. Applications are due Dec. 8, 2017. Learn more here

2. Support available for USDA Farm to School Grant Applicants
The National Farm to School Network advocated for the establishment of the USDA Farm to School Grant Program and is committed to ensuring it reaches the communities that need this funding most. NFSN is available on a consultation basis to provide assistance to potential applicants in the areas of: planning and preparing the application; customized support for Native communities; evaluation; and, focus on early care and education / pre-K. The deadline to express interest in receiving assistance from the National Farm to School Network on a consultation basis is November 8, 2017. Learn more here

3. KidsGardening 2018 Youth Garden Grants
The 2018 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 organization, public or private 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. Applications are due December 8, 2017. Learn more and apply

4. Whole Kids Foundation's School Garden Grant
Created in partnership with FoodCorps, the Garden Grant program provides a $2,000 monetary grant to support a new or existing edible garden at either a K-12 school, 501(c)(3) Non-profit working in partnership with a K-12 school, or 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. The application period is open September 1, 2017 through October 31, 2017. Learn more here


Events & Webinars
1. October is National Farm to School Month!
National Farm to School month is here! The National Farm to School Network has free resources, planning materials, activity ideas and a new calendar of events for ways you can get involved in October. Visit farmtoschool.org/month to get involved. 

2. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics Webinar: Harvest of the Month 
Thursday, November 2 // 2-3pm ET
States across the country are developing Harvest of the Month programs including curriculum and resources to make it easier for schools, teachers, students and families to join in on farm to school fun. Though different from state to state, Harvest of the Month programs generally highlight a new seasonal product each month with activities, recipes, growing tips and many more resources designed to engage stakeholders and celebrate seasonal, local food. Join us for the National Farm to School Network’s November Trending Topics Webinar where we will hear from four different states about their Harvest of the Month journey. Learn about successful initiatives, best practices, and resources for developing or implementing Harvest of the Month in your school or even across your state. Register here.

3. 2017 Ohio Food Policy Summit
November 6 //  The Ohio State University 
The Ohio Food Policy Summit is an annual event geared toward collaboration and conversation. Any stakeholder involved in food system work in our state is encouraged to attend. Whether you are a member of your local Food Policy Council, involved in a farmers' market or farm-to-school food hub program, or a concerned consumer, this gathering is meant for you. Learn more and register here

4. Community Food Systems Conference
December 5-7 // Boston, Mass. 
Register today for the New Entry Sustainable Farming Project's 2017 Community Food Systems Conference, December 5-7 in Boston, MA! This conference will address common underlying themes between food security, social justice and sustainable agriculture including obstacles in urban and rural environments and fostering community empowerment to create and sustain resilient local food systems. Learn more and register here


Action Items
1. Call for Workshop & Poster Proposals - 9th Farm to Cafeteria Conference
The 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference is coming to Cincinnati, OH, April 25-27,2017! Hosted by the National Farm to School Network, this biennial event will convene more than 1,000 diverse stakeholders working to source local food for institutional cafeterias and foster a culture of food and agricultural literacy across America. Conference organizers are seeking workshop and poster proposals from individuals and organizations working to improve our food system, strengthen community health, empower youth, advance equity and increase opportunities for farmers. Learn more information about proposal submissions here. Proposals are due no later than 8pm ET on Nov. 14, 2017.

2. National Farm to School Month's Take Action Pledge
Celebrate National Farm to School Month by adding your name to the National Farm to School Network's Take Action Pledge! Sign the pledge and you’ll be entered to win our Farm to School Month sweepstakes! Ten winners will receive a prize package that includes: assets from the Captain Planet Foundation Project Learning Garden™ program, a Stand2Learn student standing desk, and a collection of seeds from High Mowing Organic Seeds. No action is too small – take the pledge now

3. 2018 Celebration of School Nutrition Heroes: Call for Nominations

Your help is needed in identifying the 2018 School Nutrition Heroes! Do you know an SNA member who goes above and beyond his/her/their responsibilities to make a difference in the community? We need you to tell us about this extraordinary person. The Celebration of School Nutrition Heroes will be held for the 5th year on Monday, March 5, 2018 during SNA’s Legislative Action Conference (LAC). We are looking for the five special SNA members who will be recognized at the Celebration. Nominate your School Nutrition Hero today.


Resources & Research
1. New Farm to School Recipes from the Chef Ann Foundation
Chef Ann Foundation has added 50 new, farm to school recipes and 6 one-week menu cycles to its wide range of tools and resources, including some of the first recipes and menu cycles that count towards the USDA meal patterns for Pre-K that went into effect this fall. The recipes can be scaled for any number of servings, and include the full cost analysis for a school or district’s size in addition to the cost per serving - making it easier to plan budgets while incorporating new recipes. Learn more here

2. Process evaluation of a farm-to-preschool program in New York City
The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene piloted a farm-to-preschool program for low-income Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)-eligible children and their families at 9 childcare centers in New York City. The program made local produce available for purchase at the preschools, offered nutrition education to parents and childcare center staff, and offered children’s gardening activities in participating classrooms. Process evaluation strategies included tracking produce sales, redemption of produce coupons provided with nutrition education, and nutrition education workshop attendance, as well as cross-sectional surveys with parents and staff, childcare center directors, nutrition educators, and childcare center teachers. This article describes the program model, shares process evaluation data, and summarizes lessons learned from this program.

3. Michigan State University's 2017 Sustainable Food Systems Progress Report
The University of Michigan is in a unique position as a non-land-grant, tier-1 research institution with a strong and growing foundation in transdisciplinary sustainable food systems work. This report highlights the impacts from the collaboration of several different campus partners including: Research and Teaching (UM Sustainable Food Systems Initiative), Student Leadership (UM Sustainable Food Program), UM Campus Farm, and Dining and Operations. Read more


Job Opportunities
1. Marketing Specialist, FARMroots
FARMroots (the NYC Greenmarket’s technical assistance program)  is seeking to hire a Marketing Specialist. This position requires a nuanced understanding of agricultural marketing in the Northeast, including supply chains for various farm types and emerging marketing channels. Learn more and apply

2. Regional and Sustainable Food Systems Manager, Boston College Dining
Boston College seeks to fill the position of Regional and Sustainable Food Systems Manager. The position supports the implementation of Dining Services’ “Regional and Sustainable Roadmap and Action Plan”. Will research, consult, and assist procurement strategy for regional and sustainable sourcing with the Assistant Director of Auxiliary Services and BC Dining Services Management Team. Learn more and apply

3. Real Food Challenge hiring for multiple positions
Real Food Challenge is seeking to hire a Northeast Regional Coordinator as well as a Digital Strategy and Northeast Coordinator. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until November 20. Positions are based out of Boston, MA, though it may be possible to work remotely with occasional in-person meetings in the Boston area. 

4. FoodCorps hiring for multiple positions

FoodCorps is a fast-growing national nonprofit that provides a scalable response to the epidemics of childhood obesity and food insecurity, while training a new generation of leaders in the fields of food, health, education and sustainability. Read more about FoodCorps' job openings


Farm to School in the News
Students produce what is believed to be biggest sweet potato grown in South Carolina

School nurse Carolyn Hendrix said this is the first year Carlisle-Foster’s Grove Elementary had a school garden, created by a student club called the Green Team. Their goals did not include setting a state record, she said, but that is apparently the case with their sweet potato. It weighs 12 pounds, 45 ounces, which she likens to a “heavy baby.” (Charlotte Observer)

Locally sourced fruits, vegetables produce big results for Ohio district
Since becoming a Farm to School district, the amount of fresh produce being eaten has greatly increased, Nieset said. “We have also had many positive comments from parents who call and say things like ‘My child now says broccoli is their favorite vegetable,’ or, ‘I cannot believe my child is eating cherry tomatoes or cucumbers, when we were at the grocery they requested we buy them for at home.’” (Sandusky Register)

Olive Branch "Garden Party" in Mississippi

"My third-graders grow corn and peas and okra," said Willis. "We were hoping to expand our garden so the kids could expand the crops. We want to have enough where a class can grow an entire meal. One child talked about his grandmother who cooked food. We want that community involvement with kids and how they cook at home." (Desoto Times)

Hawaii asks, "Can school gardens get kids to eat their vegetables?" 
“When you grow your own carrot, you eat it top to bottom,” said Natalie McKinney, the executive director of Kokua Hawaii. “We want the kids to be contributors to a healthy food system, to be able to want to eat fresh fruits and vegetables.” (Civil Beat)

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.

This Week in Farm to School: 10/17/17

NFSN Staff Tuesday, October 17, 2017
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 FY 2018 Farm to School Grant RFA 
The USDA FY 2018 Farm to School Request for Applications (RFA) is now open. On an annual basis, USDA awards up to $5 million in competitive grants for training, supporting operations, planning, purchasing equipment, developing school gardens, developing partnerships, and implementing farm to school programs. Applications are due Dec. 8, 2017. More information about the grants is available here. The National Farm to School Network is available on a consultation basis to provide assistance to potential applicants in the areas of: planning and preparing the application, customized support for Native communities, evaluation, and focus on early care and education/pre-K. Learn more here

2. Local Foods, Local Places
Local Foods, Local Places supports locally led, community-driven efforts to protect air and water quality, preserve open space and farmland, boost economic opportunities for local farmers and businesses, improve access to healthy local food, and promote childhood wellness. Communities are invited to apply for a new round of planning assistance from Local Foods, Local Places. The application deadline is 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on October 25, 2017.

3. Whole Kids Foundation's School Garden Grant

Created in partnership with FoodCorps, the Garden Grant program provides a $2,000 monetary grant to support a new or existing edible garden at either a K-12 school, 501(c)(3) Non-profit working in partnership with a K-12 school, or 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. The application period is open September 1, 2017 through October 31, 2017. Learn more here

Webinars & Events
1. October is National Farm to School Month!

National Farm to School month is here! The National Farm to School Network has free resources, planning materials, activity ideas and a new calendar of events for ways you can get involved in October. Visit farmtoschool.org/month to get involved. 

2. Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior (SNEB) Webinar: National Farm to School Month: Early Care Education Edition
October 17 // 12-1:15pm ET
October is National Farm to School Month, a time to celebrate the connections happening all over the country between children and local food. It is also a great time to learn more about farm to early care and education (ECE), a suite of activities and strategies that entails three core elements, including the use of local foods in meals and snacks, gardening opportunities, and food-based learning activities implemented in the ECE setting. Join speakers from the National Farm to School Network and Arizona State University to learn about opportunities to celebrate National Farm to School Month and to learn more about the vast array of benefits of farm to ECE for children, families and communities. This webinar is free and open to the public. Register here

3. Food Sovereignty Prize
October 17 // 12pm  ET
The Food Sovereignty Prize is awarded annually by the US Food Sovereignty Alliance. A U.S. and international winner will be celebrated during the ceremony. The US Food Sovereignty Alliance works to end poverty, rebuild local food economies, and assert democratic control over the food system. We believe all people have the right to healthy, culturally appropriate food, produced in an ecologically sound manner. Register here to virtually attend this event. 

4. Value-Added Producer Grant Program 

October 18 // 1:00pm ET
The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) and US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Rural Development team will present a webinar introducing producers to the Value Added Producer Grant Program (VAPG). The webinar will help family farmers and ranchers to determine if applying for the competitive grant program is the right fit for their operation. Register here


Action Items
1. Call for Workshop & Poster Proposals - 9th Farm to Cafeteria Conference

The 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference is coming to Cincinnati, OH, April 25-27,2017! Hosted by the National Farm to School Network, this biennial event will convene more than 1,000 diverse stakeholders working to source local food for institutional cafeterias and foster a culture of food and agricultural literacy across America. Conference organizers are seeking workshop and poster proposals from individuals and organizations working to improve our food system, strengthen community health, empower youth, advance equity and increase opportunities for farmers. Learn more information about proposal submissions here. Proposals are due no later than 8pm ET on Nov. 14, 2017.

2. National Farm to School Month's Take Action Pledge
Celebrate National Farm to School Month by adding your name to the National Farm to School Network's Take Action Pledge! Sign the pledge and you’ll be entered to win our Farm to School Month sweepstakes! Ten winners will receive a prize package that includes: assets from the Captain Planet Foundation Project Learning Garden™ program, a Stand2Learn student standing desk, and a collection of seeds from High Mowing Organic Seeds. No action is too small – take the pledge now! 

3. 2018 National Health Outreach Conference: Proposal Submission
Proposals are now being accepted for the 2018 National Health Outreach Conference (NHOC) May 2-4, 2018, at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Mall of America in Bloomington, MI. Read more here. Proposals must be submitted by October 30, 2017. 


Policy News
1. Local FARMS Act introduced to help farmers meet growing demand for local food

Representatives Chellie Pingree (D-ME), Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE), and Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY) have introduced HR 3941, the Local Food And Regional Market Supply Act (Local FARMS Act).  The Local FARMS Act builds on the success of local and regional food economies by helping farmers tap into growing markets and helping consumers access healthy food. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) has introduced a companion bill in the Senate. Among other provisions, the legislation would provide schools more resources to purchase food locally. Learn more here

2. California Gov. Jerry Brown signs Farmer Equity Act
California Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation that would require California officials to focus on and address the challenges facing farmers of color in the state by making access to  state and federal resources more equitable. This comes at a critical moment as the current generation of farmers is retiring and new farmers are increasingly represented by people of color, including immigrants and refugees. The Farmer Equity Act, AB 1348 directs the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) to better provide resources, outreach, technical assistance, and decision-making power to “socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers,” so called because they have been subjected to historic racial discrimination. Read more here


Resources & Research
1. Planning for Equitable Urban and Regional Food Systems

How does and can planning and design enhance the freedom and wellbeing of marginalized actors in the food system – low-income residents, people of color, small-holder farmers, and refugees – the very people the alternative food movements purport to serve? The eleven articles and two publication reviews featured in this free issue of the journal Built Environment cover a range of topics such as the importance of addressing inclusion in planning and design processes, the potential benefits of urban agriculture, and the effects of rapid urbanization on food retail and food waste in the Global South. Read more

2. Unravelling the Food-Health Nexus: Addressing Practices, Political Economy, and Power Relations to Build Healthier Food Systems

A new report by international experts draws significant linkages between industrial food and farming practices and many of the “severest health conditions afflicting populations around the world,” from respiratory diseases to a range of cancers and systematic livelihood stresses. Read more here


Job Opportunities
1. Executive Director, Food Systems Leadership Fellowship

The Food System Leadership Fellowship has begun its search for the fellowship’s first Executive Director. The Executive Director will lead a bold new national fellowship program for some of the nation’s most effective leaders working at the intersection of food, agriculture, climate, public health, community development, and social justice working to create a more sustainable and equitable food system. Learn more here

2. Farm Business Specialist, The Intervale Center
The Intervale Center seeks a  Farm Business Specialist to join their team in Burlington, Vermont. For almost 30 years, the Intervale Center has led a community food revolution that sustains farms, land and people. The Farm Business Specialist delivers high quality, custom farm business planning services that enhance the viability of Vermont’s food system. Learn more and apply

3. Visiting Assistant Professor, Indiana University

The Department of Geography invites applicants for a Visiting Assistant Professor position in Critical Food Studies and Environmental Change to begin on January 1, 2018. The position is for one semester with the potential for renewal for the 2018-2019 academic year. Learn more and apply


Farm to School in the News
Our Community: Farm to Preschool in New York 

Check out this video featuring a Long Island based farm to preschool program funded through SNAP ED through the New York State Department of Health . This Farm to ECE program aims to increase access to local and fresh produce in underserved areas of Long Island while also providing nutrition lessons to preschool students. (FiOS 1 News)

Local Produce and Good Nutrition for South Dakota Students 
National Farm to School Month is upon us, and the Huron School District Nutritional Department is making great efforts as usual to educate and provide students with local, fresh produce. “What’s not to like about kids and local produce,” said Carol Tompkins, Food Service Director at the Huron School District, “It helps everybody, the local farmers and economy, and the kids like the locally grown produce.” (Huron Plainsman)

Arkansas Elementary School Students Grow Their Own Food

Governor Asa Hutchinson proclaimed October Arkansas Farm to School Month. It's a nationwide effort to connect schools with local farms and the goal is to provide children healthy meals in cafeterias while improving nutrition. (THV 11)

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.

This Week in Farm to School: 10/10/17

NFSN Staff Tuesday, October 10, 2017
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 FY 2018 Farm to School Grant RFA 
The USDA Office of Community Food Systems has released the FY 2018 Farm to School Request for Applications (RFA). The purpose of the USDA Farm to School Grant Program is to assist eligible entities in implementing farm to school programs that improve access to local foods in eligible schools. On an annual basis, USDA awards up to $5 million in competitive grants for training, supporting operations, planning, purchasing equipment, developing school gardens, developing partnerships, and implementing farm to school programs. Interested in applying? Complete applications must be submitted on grants.gov by 11:59pm ET on December 8, 2017. Check out our resources for applicants and see a list of awardees since the release of the first RFA in 2013. 

2. Value Added Producer Resource Grants
The Value Added Producer Grant (VAPG) program helps agricultural producers enter into value-added activities related to the processing and/or marketing of new products. The goals of this program are to generate new products, create and expand marketing opportunities, and increase producer income. Learn more  by attending the October 18th webinar and apply here

3. Local Foods, Local Places
Local Foods, Local Places supports locally led, community-driven efforts to protect air and water quality, preserve open space and farmland, boost economic opportunities for local farmers and businesses, improve access to healthy local food, and promote childhood wellness. Communities are invited to apply for a new round of planning assistance from Local Foods, Local Places. The application deadline is 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on October 25, 2017.


Webinars
1. NFSN WEBINAR Farm to ECE Quarterly Webinar: Farm to Early Care and Education in Head Start – A Natural Alignment

Tuesday, October 10, 3-4 PM ET
Explore the National Farm to School Network’s exciting new resource, Growing Head Start Success with Farm to Early Care and Education, and hear from Head Start practitioners about best practices and successes in implementing farm to ECE in the Head Start setting. Register here

2.  NFSN WEBINAR Webinar: Economic Impacts of Farm to School
Wednesday, Oct. 11 // 12-1pm ET
This webinar is part of a wider effort to promote the release of the associated report Economic Impacts of Farm to School: Case Studies and Assessment Tools (a collaborative project of the National Farm to School Network and Colorado State University). Panelists will discuss findings of the new report, highlight the use of two key resources for conducting economic impact studies of food system initiatives and their application to farm to school economic impact assessment, and discuss continuing work to better understand the impacts of farm to school activities. Additional panelists include representatives from  USDA Office of Community Food Systems, USDA Agricultural Marketing Service and Cornell University. Register for the webinar by submitting this form

3. Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior (SNEB) Webinar: National Farm to School Month: Early Care Education Edition
Tuesday, October 17 // 12-1:15pm ET
October is National Farm to School Month, a time to celebrate the connections happening all over the country between children and local food. It is also a great time to learn more about farm to early care and education (ECE), a suite of activities and strategies that entails three core elements, including the use of local foods in meals and snacks, gardening opportunities, and food-based learning activities implemented in the ECE setting. Join speakers from the National Farm to School Network and Arizona State University to learn about opportunities to celebrate National Farm to School Month and to learn more about the vast array of benefits of farm to ECE for children, families and communities. This webinar is free and open to the public. Register here

4. Special Session on Soil Health

Wednesday, October 25 // 9:30 am -11:30 am ET
Organized by the Organic Farming Research Foundation, this special session on Soil Health Research is applicable to both organic and conventional practices, providing production systems to improve sustainability and profit. Presenters will discuss effects of cover crops, compost, and rotation, as well as the influence of soil management practices on economic returns. Register here or plan to watch the archived recording here

Events

1. October is National Farm to School Month!
National Farm to School month is here! The National Farm to School Network has free resources, planning materials, activity ideas and a new calendar of events for ways you can get involved in October. Visit farmtoschool.org/month to get involved. 

2. National Farm to School Month Tweet Chat
October 12 // 12-1pm ET
Every October, communities across the country come together to celebrate the connections happening between children and local food. Come celebrate with us during a live chat on Twitter! Ask your farm to school questions, hear from movement leaders, share resources and tell us about your favorite examples of farm to school in action. Join the National Farm to School Network (@FarmtoSchool) and special guests for a #FarmtoSchool101 tweet chat onThursday, October 12 from 12-1pm ET to discuss how farm to school supports healthy kids, thriving farms and vibrant communities. 

3.  National School Lunch Week 2017

Oct. 9-13 is National School Lunch Week! During this annual weeklong celebration, School Nutrition Association members and students around the country celebrate in their cafeterias with decorations, special menus, events, and more. The 2017 NSLW theme is “School Lunch: Recipes for Success”, and it’s all about showing off the secrets to your school lunch success in your schools and districts—fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy, and of course, our students. Learn more and find resources to celebrate here

4. Summit for Beginner Farmer Service Providers
January 11, 2018 // Hyattsville, MD
This summit brings together beginning farmer service providers from across the region to discuss best practices, policy, and emerging trends in beginning farmer training. This one-day summit is held annually. Register here

Action Items

1. 9th Farm to Cafeteria Conference: Call for Workshop & Poster Proposals 
The 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference is coming to Cincinnati, OH, April 25-27,2017! Hosted by the National Farm to School Network, this biennial event will convene more than 1,000 diverse stakeholders working to source local food for institutional cafeterias and foster a culture of food and agricultural literacy across America. Conference organizers are seeking workshop and poster proposals from individuals and organizations working to improve our food system, strengthen community health, empower youth, advance equity and increase opportunities for farmers. Learn more information about proposal submissions here. Proposals are due no later than 8 pm ET on November 14, 2017. All questions should be sent to conference@farmtoschool.org

2. National Farm to School Month's Take Action Pledge

Celebrate National Farm to School Month by adding your name to the National Farm to School Network's Take Action Pledge! Sign the pledge and you’ll be entered to win our Farm to School Month sweepstakes! Ten winners will receive a prize package that includes: assets from the Captain Planet Foundation Project Learning Garden™ program, a Stand2Learn student standing desk, and a collection of seeds from High Mowing Organic Seeds. No action is too small – take the pledge now! 

3. #RealSchoolFood Campaign

It’s easy! Post a #RealSchoolFood selfie to social media throughout the month of October, and our generous sponsors will donate $1 to the Chef Ann Foundation. Make sure your post includes #RealSchoolFood, a call out to @ChefAnnFoundation , and make it public so it's counted! Post as many times as you want, each post gets us a $1 donation to help schools serve healthier food to kids.

4. Call for Nominations: 2018 School Nutrition Heroes
School Nutrition Association is seeking nominations of SNA members who go above and beyond their responsibilities to make a difference in the community for SNA's 2018 School Nutrition Heroes awards. To tell them about the individual that you think should be recognized as a School Nutrition Hero, fill out the Online Nomination Form. All nominations are due no later than Friday, October 27, 2017.  

Resources & Research

1. Johns Hopkins' FoodSpan Curriculum  
The Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future has developed a curriculum for high school students on the food system.  The curriculum, called FoodSpan, is highlighted in this Baltimore Sun article. 

2. FoodTank's List of 18 Farm-to-School Initiatives Making an Impact
Food Tank is celebrating farm-to-school month by featuring 19 inspiring and innovative farm-to-school programs from around the world. These programs are making a demonstrated difference in child health, school attendance rates, food security, and farmer livelihoods in many communities. The National Farm to School Network was honored to be included on the list. Read about all 18 of the farm to school programs that made the list. 

Job Opportunities
1. Public Health Nutritionist, Cambridge Public Health Department (CPHD)
The CPHD seeks to hire a Public Health Nutritionist to develop, implement and coordinate activities in Cambridge to promote healthy eating and active living with a focus on policy, practices, systems changes to create an environment that promotes healthy choices. Learn more here

2. Executive Director, National Farm Farm Coalition (NFFC)
NFFC seeks to fill the role of Executive Director to engage its diverse and dedicated membership to influence national farm and fisheries policy, magnify its fundraising capacity, and expand relationships with allies, potential allies and legislators while serving as a public face of the coalition. Read more here

3. Operations Manager and Culinary Manager, San Francisco Unified School District 
San Francisco Unified School District has two open management positions within Student Nutrition Services. Both are great opportunities to drive innovation and create change within a large school district's school meals program. Learn more about the Operations Manager role as well as the Culinary Manager

Farm to School in the News

Student-grown salad in the school cafeteria? These D.C. kids dig it
At Horace Mann Elementary School in Northwest D.C., instruction isn’t confined to a few cedar-raised beds. After leafy vegetables are planted and cared for, students harvest the crops, chop them up and serve them to more than 400 of their peers for lunch. (WTOP)

Local Food Hub brings apples to Virgina Elementary for "Crunch Heard 'Round the Commonwealth"
For Virginia Farm to School Week, the Local Food Hub is supplying cafeterias in six public school districts and one private school with fresh, fruits, vegetables, meats, and other products grown by Virginia family farms. In total, the schools purchased over $10,500 in local products. (Charlottesville Tomorrow)

Pennsylvania elementary students sow seeds for hydroponic garden business

The agricultural team planted 100 strawberries and is breeding tilapia as part of the project. The technology team works with tools to gather data, and the business team is tasked with creating a logo and marketing the shop. (Triblive


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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