by Ashley McIntyre, Tara Wilkins
(April 1, 2014) — Many central Kentucky residents are at risk of hunger, living in veritable food deserts, defined as areas with low access to fresh, healthy foods. Since March 15 and running through April 30, the Center for Community Outreach and local non-profit Seedleaf is working together to connect Lexington’s youth with healthy, fresh food, launching the Seedleaf Highlights Campaign with classroom visits, informational sessions, and a fundraising campaign with the crowdsourcing website, Indiegogo.com.
“The CCO provides volunteer opportunities to UK students that reach into both our local and global communities,” states Laura Greenfield, CCO’s director of promotions. “With the Highlights Campaign, we’re looking to highlight a social issue in Lexington, an organization [Seedleaf] that is working to combat the issue, and then share all the great opportunities for involvement.”
Each summer Seedleaf hosts SEEDS, a program for 5th-11th grade students to become involved in all processes of food growing in an urban setting. The SEEDS program (Service Education and Entrepreneurship in Downtown Spaces) allows for hands-on experience in growing and cultivating a garden, preparing healthy meals, and nutrition basics. It also gives these students insight into the fundamentals of entrepreneurship by teaching them to develop a business venture that involves selling their healthy products to the community and inducting them as healthy food ambassadors to the Lexington area.
Using their common mission to provide volunteer opportunities, inspire advocacy, and educate UK students and Lexington’s citizens, the CCO and Seedleaf will kick off the Seedleaf Highlights Campaign with multiple information sessions beginning on March 25. These sessions will deliver information about Seedleaf, the SEEDS program, and share volunteer opportunities to work in Seedleaf’s many community gardens, and help to raise funds through promoting their Indiegogo campaign. As part of the Indiegogo campaign, residents can donate as little as $1 for the care of plants, purchasing seeds, and sponsorship for SEEDS participants.
Students and staff are invited to any of the information sessions where they can learn how they can get involved. They will be exposed to food security issues in Lexington and encouraged to get involved in Lexington’s spring community garden season.
To donate today click here.
Sign up to join Seedleaf in nourishing our community here.
Dates of the information sessions:
Tuesday, April 8, 7:30 p.m., MLK Center, UK Student Center
Friday, April 11, 1 p.m., Niles Gallery, Fine Arts Library
For more information, please contact Laura Greenfield, CCO director of promotions at email@example.com or 859-257-9385.