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CCMS Partners with NPA and Marilyn Magaram Center

The Marilyn Magaram Center, the Institute for Community Health and Well-Being, and Neighborhood Partners in Action (NPA) at California State University, Northridge in partnership with Christopher Columbus Middle School embarked in a joint venture working effortlessly to bring nutrition and gardening education to students and parents at this school and 12 other sites.  The goal of the Champions for Change program is to reduce the risk of obesity among SNAP-Ed eligible persons and to educate children and parents on how to grow their own produce even when faced with a limited budget. At the launch of our program, we built two raised garden beds in a garden with vast land and an amazing growth potential. After working in collaboration with Christopher Columbus’ Parent Center Director, Ms. Urrutia and Principal McIntyre-Sciarrino, we gained the trust and ignited the interest of a group of parents to join our adult nutrition and gardening education classes. This group of parents has now become our Garden Committee. They have become invested in getting this garden to its full growth potential. We now have 13 beds with many different vegetables and fruits growing. We have hosted harvesting events and have been able to harvest enough produce for each family to take a sufficient amount home. In addition, we have established a relationship with the cafeteria staff who are now participating in the garden. They are ecstatic to be part of this program and to be able to grow vegetables. The partnership between the parents, cafeteria staff, and teachers continues to strengthen and expand. Our vision is to have a strong school community collaboration to ensure sustainability of the garden. This garden can be used as a learning platform for many generations of students throughout the years. 

Posted by: Mr. Richard Helm Published:1/28/18
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