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Annie's® Grows Its 'Gardens Of Goodness' Initiative With Support Of FoodCorps Fellows

BERKELEY, Calif., Oct. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- As part of its continuing work to connect children and families with real food, Annie's today announced its support and sponsorship of the 2012/2013 class of FoodCorps Fellows, 12 standout FoodCorps alumni embarking on a second year of service.

Throughout the school year, FoodCorps Fellows will support, guide and mentor FoodCorps Service Members in each state the organization serves ( Arizona, Arkansas, Connecticut, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Montana, New Mexico, North Carolina and Oregon). The Fellows will also coordinate projects and cultivate relationships with local partners, media and the community at large.

"For decades, Annie's has been dedicated to programs that provide access to and education about real food," said Sarah Bird, Chief Mom Officer for Annie's. "As an extension of this commitment, Annie's is very proud to support FoodCorps, a pioneering, like-minded organization fostering truly meaningful and lasting relationships between kids and healthy food."

As a seed funder and anchor sponsor of FoodCorps' first crop of Fellows, Annie's is helping FoodCorps make a significant impact on childhood obesity and food insecurity, as well as making possible:
  • Garden-enhanced nutrition education in schools;
  • Building and tending to gardens that serve as tools for engaging children to become more adventurous eaters, and for engaging parents and community members to become advocates for healthier school lunch;
  • Greater access to healthy food for kids and families both inside and outside the school environment; and
  • Stronger communities through the recruitment, training and placement of community volunteers committed to long-term sustainability of the healthy food environments Annie's and FoodCorps help create.

"FoodCorps is grateful for Annie's commitment to growing food leaders and healthy kids," said Debra Eschmeyer, FoodCorps Co-Founder and Director of Partnerships and Policy. "Give children nutrition education in the classroom, hands-on learning through school gardens, and nourishing food in the cafeteria, and a lifetime of healthy eating can take root."

Gardens of Goodness – Sowing Support for Sustainable Food in Schools Support for FoodCorps is just one of Annie's "Gardens of Goodness" initiatives, programs that support school gardens and sustainable agriculture.

Additional Gardens of Goodness efforts include:
  • Grants for Gardens: Grants of up to $1,500 twice a year to schools interested in starting and sustaining school gardens. Online Grants for Gardens applications will be available October 1 at www.Annies.com/school-gardens.
  • Sustainable Agriculture Scholarships: $100,000 in scholarships awarded each year to selected college and graduate students studying sustainable agriculture. Applications for Sustainable Agriculture Scholarships are available at www.Annies.com/our-practices/agricultural-scholarships/.
  • Annie's Garden Resource: A free, downloadable "how to" guide for five school garden types (e.g., windowsill, vertical, raised bed & container, tunnel & greenhouse, and large-scale gardens), developed in partnership with the Center for Ecoliteracy. This guide and additional Gardens of Goodness resources from school garden experts such as Farm to School are available at www.Annies.com/school-gardens.

About FoodCorpsFoodCorps is a nationwide team of leaders that connects kids to real food and helps them grow up healthy. FoodCorps places these leaders in limited-resource communities for a year of public service where they conduct hands-on food education, build and tend school gardens, and facilitate getting high-quality local ingredients into school meals. For more information, visit www.foodcorps.org.

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