Help Us Grow Grants Awarded for 2019-2020
The Martin-Pitt Partnership for Children is thrilled to announce the names of the 16 childcare facilities that will be participating in our Help Us Grow gardening program for 2019-2020. Also, two facilities were selected to expand the Farm to Early Care and Education Collaboration grant received from NC State University.
The Vidant Health Foundation has awarded the Partnership $14,000 to implement the Help Us Grow gardening program for the 2019-2020 fiscal year. Help Us Grow provides grants to licensed childcare facilities in Martin and Pitt Counties to purchase materials to start or enhance an on-site fruit and vegetable garden. The program encourages facilities to ensure children are actively involved in the planning, planting, care, and harvesting of all produce.
“The goal of the Help Us Grow gardening program is to enhance the health and education of preschool children in our community by connecting them and their families to local food, gardening, nutrition, and physical fitness resources,” said Martin-Pitt Partnership for Children Executive Director Sharon Cooper. “The grant also implements on-site technical assistance provided by the Partnership’s Quality Enhancement Specialists and Child Care Health Consultants from the local health departments. The Partnership staff will work with the facility directors, teachers, cooks, children, and families on implementing better nutrition, meal planning, and fitness activities. In addition, we will provide free training opportunities to childcare staff and families to help make them as successful as possible.”
In addition to Help Us Grow, NC State’s Farm to Early Care and Education Collaboration has renewed its support for the 2019-2020 fiscal year. Farm to ECE will fund gardens at two new childcare facilities this year, in addition to the two funded last year.
Help Us Grow: Martin County
The 2019-2020 Help Us Grow gardening grants were awarded to the following child care facilities in Martin County:
- Guiding Ones Direction
- Cookies Little Palace
- Oasis Learning Center
- Down Home Child Care II
- Little Heaven
- Just Lov’in Kids
Help Us Grow: Pitt County
The 2019-2020 Help Us Grow gardening grants were awarded to the following child care facilities in Pitt County:
- A Child’s Place
- Kids & Company
- Community Christian Child Development Center
- Kindercare [Redbanks Road]
- Greenhouse Preschool
- Creative Learning Child Care Center
- The Promised Learning Center
- New Vision Child Care Center
- Lion’s Den Child Care Center
- Down Home Child Care Center
- Beautiful Beginnings Child Care Center
- Kids 1st Daycare
Farm to Early Care and Education
The 2019-2020 Farm to Early Care and Education grants were awarded to the following child care facilities. These facilities join Smiling Faces Child Care Center and Follow the Son Child Care Center as participants of the Farm to ECE Collaboration. According to the Center for Environmental Farming Systems, “NC Farm to ECE connects local farms with local childcare centers to empower the development of community-based, equitable food systems. (Farm to Early Care and Education) enhances the health and education of young children by developing systems and experiential learning that connect children and their families with local food and farms. It includes any type of activities in ECE environments that incorporate local foods through meals and snacks, taste tests, lessons, farmer visits, cooking, growing food, and/or community and parent involvement.”
- East Carolina Kiddie College
- Little Sunshine’s Learning Center
Want to keep up with the growth occurring in our community? Click here to see our photo album from the Farm to Early Care and Education Collaboration review this Summer. Also, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for updates on the program!
Unfortunately, the Partnership doesn’t employ a full-time master gardener. Therefore, we’re always looking for ways to partner with community members interested in sharing their talents! If you or someone you know has a passion for gardening, click here to contact us! If you own a business that would be interested in partnering with us to help supply building materials, plants, seeds, or other supplies at a lower cost for our participating facilities, please click here.
Our vision is to ensure a bright future for every child in our community. With your help, we can work with our local child care facilities to grow something amazing!