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National Farm to School Network


This Week in Farm to School: 11/20/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, November 20, 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. USDA FY 2019 Farm to School Grant RFA
Deadline: December 4, 2018
The FY 2019 Farm to School Grant Program Request for Applications (RFA) is now open to applicants. Due to additional funding made available to the Farm to School Grant Program through the FY 2018 Omnibus Bill, the Office of Community Food Systems (OCFS) seeks to award approximately $7.5M in FY 2019 funding.  Applications are due Dec. 4, 2018. Learn more and apply here.

2. 2019 Youth Garden Grant
Deadline: December 17, 2018
Any nonprofit organization, public or private school, or youth program in the United States or US Territories 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. The selection of winners is based on demonstrated program impact and sustainability. The top 5 programs will be awarded grant packages worth $2,100. Grant packages worth $500 will be awarded to 20 additional programs. Applications are due December 17. Learn more here

Webinars & Events
1. National Farmers Union’s Women’s Conference
January 13-17, 2019 // San Diego, CA
Calling all women in agriculture: are you looking for applicable business skills, innovative marketing tactics, advice for making a food safety plan, and a strong network of other women in agriculture? National Farmers Union’s Women’s Conference, January 13-17 in San Diego, California, offers all that and more. Learn more and register here.

2. Green Apply Day of Service
Green Apple Day of Service is an opportunity to join schools across the world in celebrating the central role that schools play in preparing the next generation of leaders in sustainability. A school’s event improves the learning environment while strengthening student civic leadership, environmental literacy, and project management skills. Since it began in 2012, Green Apple Day of Service has inspired over 900,000 volunteers in 80 countries to act in support of sustainability at their schools. With one in eight people around the globe attending a school every day, there is more work to be done! Schools and the community leaders who support them can choose their own date for their project, and they have access to mini-grants and personalized guidance to help them make their projects a reality. Sign up and register your project by March 15, 2019 to participate at    

Research & Resources
1. 2018 National Farm to Early Care and Education Survey: Full Report and State Level Data Now Available
In 2018, the National Farm to School Network (NFSN) and the Michigan State University Center for Regional Food Systems (CRFS) surveyed early care and education (ECE) providers across the country. NFSN and CRFS have just released the full report and state level data detailing responses from 2,030 providers serving 255,257 young children in 45 states and Washington D.C. Respondents shared the benefits and challenges of connecting young children to healthy, local foods, gardening, and food and agriculture education through farm to ECE. The survey found that farm to ECE is reaching far and wide across the country. 49% of respondents are already doing farm to ECE activities and another 30% plan to start in the near future. Explore the full report and other survey resources to learn about the scope and reach of farm to ECE and opportunities to grow the movement. See the results and resources at
2. New Farm to School Resources in Spanish
Farm to school activities are taking root across the country, and can benefit every student and every community. In an effort to make farm to school information and resources accessible to more students, parents, educators, farmers and other farm to school advocates, the National Farm to School Network has had more of its signature farm to school fact sheets translated into Spanish, including Farm to School Advocacy, Local Procurement for Child Care Centers, and Local Purchasing for Family Child Care Providers. These new resources add to a growing list of farm to school and early care and education resources available in languages other than English. Explore more than 35 non-English and bilingual farm to school resources and materials in NFSN's Resource Library.

3. Slow Food USA and Whole Kids Foundation: Garden to Cafeteria Toolkit
Slow Food USA, in partnership with Whole Kids Foundation, has developed a toolkit to help school district food services safely bring school garden produce onto the lunch line!The toolkit builds off the successes and safety protocols of five school districts across the United States to provide templates and a step-by-step process to help District Food Services develop their own protocols. Read the toolkit here.

4. A Guide to Using The Creative Curriculum® to Support Farm-to-ECE Models
These resource, developed by The Policy Equity Group, align farm to ECE strategies with one of the most widely used ECE curricula—The Creative Curriculum®. The guides explores how teachers can use The Creative Curriculum® for Preschool and The Creative Curriculum® for Infants, Toddlers, & Twos as a foundation to embed farm to ECE learning opportunities into their existing practices. Read the full resource here.

Policy News
1. Local School Foods Expansion Act Introduced
Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) have introduced the Local School Foods Expansion Act. The legislation builds on the success of the Pilot Project for the Procurement of Unprocessed Fruits and Vegetable, which was authored by Wyden and Welch and passed in the 2014 Farm Bill.The Local School Foods Expansion Act establishes this pilot project as a permanent program and allows participating states and school food authorities to purchase locally-grown, fresh fruits and vegetables with existing National School Lunch Program funds. The legislation also directs the U.S. Department of Agriculture to expand the program in at least 15 states and provides additional funding for its implementation. Learn more here.

Job Opportunities
1. Executive Director, National Farm to School Network (Remote) 
National Farm to School Network seeks a dynamic, values-driven and collaborative leader as Executive Director. The Executive Director leads innovation and strategic growth toward accomplishing the mission of the organization. Location is flexible (anywhere within the U.S., with preference for proximity to Washington, D.C.). The deadline to apply is Jan. 7, 2019. Learn more here

2. Project Coordinator, Maine Farm to School Network (Gardiner, ME)
Healthy Communities of the Capital Area is the fiscal and staffing home to the Maine Farm to School Network (MFSN), which is led by a Leadership Council of farm to school stakeholders and whose mission is to build a communication and coordination infrastructure at the school and community level to support farm to school programs throughout Maine. MFSN is seeking a Coordinator to oversee implementation of the Network’s strategic plan priorities while advancing farm to school strategies and partnerships across the state of Maine with the goal of increasing procurement of Maine produced foods by schools, experiential agricultural education, and school gardens. Learn more here.

4. Castanea Fellowship

The Castanea Fellowship is looking for dedicated leaders ready to deepen the impact of their vision to build a healthier, more equitable, and sustainable food system. The Fellowship is for established leaders who are already equipped with a deep understanding of how the food system could shift in a meaningful way and have had considerable impact, yet know they could do much more. The leaders we seek are those who have demonstrated commitment to the work, understand racial equity, believe in the power of diversity, and welcome collaboration. Learn more and apply here

5. Multiple Positions, Healthy School Meals Initiative, FoodCorps (New York, NY or Portland, OR)
FoodCorps is seeking a Network Director and a Senior Director for its Healthy School Meals Initiative. Learn more and apply here.

Farm to School in the News
Dorothy Grady-Scarbrough Pioneering to End Hunger in the U.S.
According to the USDA, the percentage of households that are food insecure remains higher than it was before the 2008 recession. To grasp the issues fueling this silent epidemic, as well as how to fight them, Woman's Day spoke to three women battling hunger in their communities, inculde Dorothy Grady-Scarbrough, one of NFSN’s Mississippi Core Partners! (Women’s Day) - shout out to Dorothy! 

What School Lunches Have to Do With Fixing Wealth Inequality
Farm-to-institution organizations such as farm to school are pursuing local, state and national policies that exploit the enormous buying power of institutions such as hospitals and schools to help redistribute some of the wealth concentrated in large, private food companies. The hope is that this redistribution will create equity for farms owned by women and people of color, and provide more nourishing food choices in communities that historically have had limited options. (Yes Magazine) - shoutout to Anupama Joshi, NFSN's Executive Director!

Georgia ECE Garden Educator Recognized As PBS KIDS "Early Learning Champion"
PBS KIDS named 17 educators, including Andrea Zoppo from Little Ones Learning Center in Forest Park, Georgia, as PBS KIDS Early Learning Champions. This new awards program recognizes committed educators who work with young children, from infants to second graders, and will offer a variety of community building, leadership and professional learning opportunities provided by PBS and member stations over the next two years. (Georgia Public Broadcasting)

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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