Community & School Gardens
CDH has facilitated the establishment and enhancement of over 12 vegetable gardens in communities and schools across Houston. These gardens engage thousands of students and community members each year. CAN DO utilizes local resources, including staff, interns, and its partnership with HISD, and Food Everywhere Coalition to facilitate weekly garden training to engage students, school staff, and community residents in planting, harvesting, maintaining a garden, and understanding the garden’s greater connection to science, health, and economic development. A pre-test and post-test are provided to students that participate in the program in order to evaluate their change in knowledge, skills, and behavior. CAN DO works closely with staff and teachers to ensure that the garden training program is supportive of the material covered in the classroom and enhances the students’ knowledge and comprehension. Through implementation, weekly sessions are sustained throughout the school year, community work and harvest days are implemented monthly to engage parents and the general community in the gardens, and economic development opportunities are promoted for students and community members to experience selling their harvest at low prices to create access to healthy, affordable food options and save money for additional endeavors through the gardens. *Ongoing implementation: Near Northside (@ Berry Elementary), Fifth Ward (@ Betsy Ross Elementary); Independence Heights (@ Kennedy Elementary).