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L.A. Area Elementary Students Learn About Healthy Eating And Recycling With Edible Garden

LOS ANGELES, Dec. 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- LA's BEST, the American Chemistry Council and Assemblymember Raul Bocanegra rolled up their sleeves and planted seeds today, installing a "green garden" at Pinewood Avenue Elementary School. The school garden incorporates a variety of items like garden boxes and tools made with recycled plastics, including milk jugs and water bottles.

The "green garden" is designed to teach the importance of healthy eating and recycling to the 115 children enrolled in the program. Students joined partners and parent volunteers after school to help assemble garden boxes and picnic tables, and plant fruit and vegetable seeds.

"The garden is a tangible reminder of healthy living and sustainability," said Edith Ballesteros-Vargas, director of BEST Fit at LA's BEST. "We'll use it as an outdoor classroom to teach our students that today's plastic bottle can help nurture tomorrow's school garden. This is a great example of Expanded Learning thinking outside the classroom."

For the second straight year, the American Chemistry Council is sponsoring an installation of a "green garden" at an LA's BEST school site. Last year, elected officials joined ACC and community members to enhance gardens at Hooper Avenue and Los Feliz elementary schools. The project aims to encourage young people to help protect the planet by recycling every day, at home and at school.

"We want to inspire future generations to practice healthy habits," said Steve Russell, vice president of plastics for the American Chemistry Council. "You're never too young to learn to recycle everyday items like water bottles, yogurt cups, wraps and bags. This is a perfect lesson in recycling coming to life, in the form of a school garden."

Assemblymember Raul Bocanegra was on hand to help unveil a dedication plaque at the school in his district during a ceremony celebrating the installation of the garden.

"I am proud to be involved in a community-wide effort that teaches young people about the importance of taking care of their health and the environment," Bocanegra said. "These children look up to us and it is our responsibility to band together, lead by example and demonstrate the importance of living a more sustainable lifestyle."

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