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Four schools awarded grants for gardens

Release Date: March 31, 2014
Contact: Kendi Parvin - 608.442.3748 kendi.parvin@wismed.org

Madison, Wis. (March 31, 2014) –The Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation recently announced four schools that will receive $3,000 in grants earmarked for the development of school garden programs. The grants, supported by Humana, Inc., were awarded to Mineral Point Elementary School, Mt. Horeb School District, Stratford Schools and Doudna Elementary in Richland Center, Wisconsin.

These schools will use the funding to help build new gardens or expand existing programs. With the production of natural, whole foods onsite, more nutritious ingredients can be included in student lunch programs, and students are able to share their garden surplus with the community. The gardens also give children a hands-on learning experience to illustrate the basics of good nutrition, encourage active lifestyles and help them develop a sense of ownership and responsibility—important lessons for a healthy life.

Planning for school gardens in these communities has already inspired widespread community involvement and spurred participation by parents and local physicians.

“There is significant evidence that school gardens help prevent childhood obesity and improve overall community health,” said Mineral Point family physician Sarah Fox, MD. “As a physician and parent of three children attending Mineral Point Elementary, I’m excited to be closely involved in the garden project.”

“Serving healthy foods in schools is just the first step. School gardens not only provide fresh produce, but they give kids a chance to learn about the farm to fork concept, instilling a pattern of healthy eating for the future,” said Gennifer Jeffries, Humana community relations manager. “At Humana, we believe in establishing well-being for a lifetime, and we look forward to seeing these important programs expand throughout the community.”

A complete list of grant recipients is posted on the Foundation’s website.

Humana Inc., headquartered in Louisville, Ky., is a leading health care company that offers a wide range of insurance products and health and wellness services that incorporate an integrated approach to lifelong well-being. By leveraging the strengths of its core businesses, Humana believes it can better explore opportunities for existing and emerging adjacencies in health care that can further enhance wellness opportunities for the millions of people across the nation with whom the company has relationships. Visit Humana’s website for more information.