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National Farm to School Network

News

This Week in Farm to School: 5/22/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, May 22, 2018
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. Farm to ECE Funding Opportunity – Act Now to Leverage Funds in Your State
The federal budget passed in March 2018 included historic increases for key federal early care and education programs, notably the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF), which funds the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) program, was increased by $2.37 billion. Some of this new influx of funding will be used for quality improvements to early care and education that can include farm to ECE initiatives. Review this new memo from the National Farm to School Network and the Policy Equity Group for more information and ways to take action in your state. For more information, contact Lacy Stephens, Program Manager at the National Farm to School Network, at lacy@farmtoschool.org or Soumya Bhat, Director of Early Childhood Equity Initiatives at the Policy Equity Group, soumyab@policyequity.com

2. CDC Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health Funding
CDC announces the availability of FY 2018 funds to implement CDC-RFA-DP18-1813: Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH). This five-year program will provide funding to communities to improve health, prevent chronic diseases, and reduce health disparities among racial and ethnic populations with the highest risk, or burden, of chronic disease. Approximately 32 projects will be supported by this funding, with average yearly funding level expected to be approximately $781,250. Applications are due July 16, 2018. Learn more here

3. CDC High Obesity Program Funding
CDC announces the availability of fiscal year 2018 funds to implement CDC-RFA-DP18-1809: High Obesity Program. This five-year program will fund land grant universities to leverage community extension services to implement evidence-based strategies that increase access to places that provide healthier foods and safe and accessible places for physical activity in counties with an adult obesity rate of over 40%. Farm to ECE initiatives could support suggested program strategies including, "Working with food vendors, distributors and producers to enhance healthier food procurement and sales," and "Establishing healthy nutrition standards in key institutions" including early care and education. See the Notice of Funding Opportunity for more information and contact Lacy Stephens, NFSN Program Manager, at lacy@farmtoschool.org to discuss how NFSN can partner in or support your farm to ECE focused proposal.   

4. Jump Start Healthy Changes Grant
Fuel Up to Play 60: Jump Start Healthy Changes Grants offer funding for schools to improve opportunities for healthy eating and physical activity. Funds are awarded for schools to implement at least one Healthy Eating Play and one Physical Activity Play from the Fuel Up to Play 60 Playbook. K-12 schools that are enrolled in the Fuel Up to Play 60 program for the school year and participate in the National School Lunch Program are eligible to apply. Applications are due June 13, 2018. Learn more here

5. 2018 CACFP Meal Service Training Grants
To assist States and CACFP operators with implementation of the updated CACFP meal patterns, Congress appropriated funds for the provision of noncompetitive grants for States to provide hands-on training and technical assistance. These meal service training grants will assist State agencies in providing job skills training for CACFP operators on ways to plan and prepare and serve nutritious foods. Learn more about specific training focus areas and how to apply here


Webinars & Events
1. Webinar: Happy Birthday CACFP! Resources to Celebrate & Support Nutrition
May 23, 2pm ET
Did you know that this May marks the 50th anniversary of the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP)? To celebrate, Healthier Generation is partnering with the National CACFP Forum – and we’re both gearing up to party all month! Looking to learn even more? RSVP today to participate in a LIVE webinar co-hosted by both organizations on May 23rd at 2pm ET.    

2. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics Webinar: State Farm to School Positions
June 7, 2pm ET
State-supported farm to school positions within state agencies and Extension offices offer vital leadership and support to further institutionalize the farm to school movement. Join this webinar to learn about a new resource from the National Farm to School Network which highlights the growth and prevalence of state-supported farm to school positions and offers tools, resources and best practices for advocating for and maintaining state positions. Hear from NFSN Core Partners in South Carolina, Missouri and Oregon as they share their success, challenges and lessons learned and take away practical steps to advancing state-supported positions. Register here.

3. NFSN WEBINAR Fundraising for Farm to School
June 19, 3-4pm ET
Fundraising for farm to school can be challenging. Join this webinar to learn about different opportunities and avenues to fundraise for farm to school activities. This webinar is open to the public and will be led by Lea Madry, National Farm to School Network Development Director. Register here

4. Healthy Eating in Practice 2018 Conference
August 26-29, 2018 // Asheville, North Carolina
Healthy Eating in Practice is a hands-on conference for practitioners, researchers, and influencers, focused on changing the culture of healthcare to better support healthy eating behaviors, particularly in children and families, and prevent chronic diet-related diseases. Register by June 1 to take advantage of early-bird pricing. Learn more here.


Resources & Research
1. Karen Washington: It’s Not a Food Desert, It’s Food Apartheid
In an interview with Guernica, activist and organizer Karen Washington discusses why the phrase “food desert” isn’t the most accurate way to describe neighborhoods that lack access to healthy food. Instead, she uses “food apartheid.” “‘[F]ood apartheid’ looks at the whole food system, along with race, geography, faith, and economics,” she tells Brones. “You say ‘food apartheid’ and you get to the root cause of some of the problems around the food system. It brings in hunger and poverty. It brings us to the more important question: What are some of the social inequalities that you see, and what are you doing to erase some of the injustices?” Read more here

2. Join the #GirlsAre Movement
In honor of National Physical Fitness and Sports month, the National Farm to School Network has joined the Alliance for a Healthier Generation for #GirlsAre, a nationwide campaign to empower girls to celebrate their athleticism and get moving. Sign the #GirlsAre pledge today at girlsare.org and follow along on social media using the hashtag #GirlsAre through Friday, June 1.

3. NEW CDC Infant and Toddler Nutrition Website
CDC Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity has released a website that brings together existing information and practical strategies on feeding infants and toddlers from birth to 24 months of age. Topics include breastfeeding, formula feeding, feeding from a bottle, essential vitamins and minerals, introduction of solid foods and beyond (including what foods and drinks to encourage and what to limit or avoid), knowing when your child is hungry, mealtime tips and routines. View the website here


Policy Updates
1. 2018 Farm Bill Update + Call to Action
Last Friday, the House’s draft of the 2018 Farm Bill - H.R. 2, the Agriculture and Nutrition Act of 2018 - was voted down 198-213. While the House Majority party is determining whether to bring H.R. 2 back for another vote, the National Farm to School Network turns its focus to the Senate’s draft. With no farm to school priorities included in the House version, the Senate’s draft is a curial opportunity to ensure that supportive farm to school policies are included in this important legislation. NFSN encourages all farm to school advocates to call their Senators and share the importance of farm to school in their communities. Find your Senator’s contact information and a sample call script here. Thank you for making your voice heard!

Jobs & Internships
1. Program Specialist, Office of the State Superintendent of Education (Washington, D.C.) 
The Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE), Division of Health and Wellness, seeks a Program Specialist to manage its Farm to School Program and the USDA Foods in Schools program for DC. Job #3555. Learn more here

2. Director of Programs, Farm to Institution New England (Remote, New England) 
Farm to Institution New England seeks a Director of Programs to manage FINE's farm and sea to campus program and food service program. Learn more here


Farm to School in the News
Massachusetts student garden draws national attention
The vegetable and berry garden at Haverhill High School in Haverhill, Mass., was designed with raised beds, making it accessible to all students at the school - particularly those with special needs, who plant, care for and harvest the crops. The students also learn to cook with their bounty, and they enter their vegetables into the Topsfield Fair each year for judging. The National Education Association - National Farm to School Network’s 2018 National Partner of the Year - was on hand at the school’s Spring Planting event last week to see what this innovative farm to school program looks like in action. Throughout 2018, NFSN is partnering with NEA to make stronger connections with educators & ESPs and build meaningful partnerships that strengthen local farm to school efforts. (The Eagle-Tribune)

Tennessee students enjoy fruits of their labor
Jere Whitson Elementary School students were offered something for lunch last Friday that had never been available to them before.  As children came through the cafeteria serving line, they were offered an opportunity to try some freshly picked lettuce — lettuce that had been grown in a garden on the school's property. (Herald-Citizen

D.C. middle-schoolers explore the world on a plate
D.C. sixth-graders are participating in a year-long after school program called Cooking Skills and World Cuisine. Once a week, the students learn about cultures across the globe and healthful food choices through cooking (and eating). On this day, students learned about Ethiopian culture, such as how extended families often share meals and that the person sitting next to you is supposed to refill your drink. This month they also made food from Germany and Jamaica. (Washington Post

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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