CHICAGO, April 25, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Seeds of Change®, an organic seed and food company, is celebrating spring with the launch of the "Sowing Millions, Growing Minds" initiative and will donate 25 million seeds to help school children nationwide plant organic school gardens. Organic school gardens are a growing trend nationally and offer children valuable lessons in science, health, conservation, nutrition education and life skills. Beyond the individual level, increased numbers of school gardens can help expose entire communities to healthy foods and eating, which is especially important in communities that have little or no access to healthy food choices, known as food deserts. It can also help make a dent in public health issues such as childhood obesity.
"At Seeds of Change, we are passionate about growing good food. We are committed to helping teach children where food comes from and how it is grown," said Tricia Lang, brand manager for Seeds of Change. "As part of these efforts, we are kicking off the 2012 spring gardening season with this exciting donation. We want kids to get their hands dirty and learn about the joy of eating organic produce fresh from the garden."
To announce the donation program, Seeds of Change hosted an event in partnership with Green City Market, a not for profit supporting local, sustainable agriculture. The event took place in Chicago at the Edible Gardens at Lincoln Park Zoo's Farm in the Zoo. To further demonstrate their commitment to organic gardening and education in Chicago, Seeds of Change awarded a grant to the Green City Market that will make it possible for hundreds of Chicago Public School students to visit the Edible Gardens on field trips to learn about organic gardening first hand. In addition, Seeds of Change donated gardening tools to the Edible Gardens.
As part of the festivities to launch the "Sowing Millions, Growing Minds" initiative, Seeds of Change and Green City Market invited children from the Garden Club at Yates Elementary School located in Chicago's Humboldt Park neighborhood to participate. The area is known for its staggering statistics related to childhood obesity and lack of fresh food access, and the students are doing their part to educate their classmates and the community about gardening. Jeanne Nolan, an organic gardening expert and director of the Edible Gardens program, led a planting demonstration and helped the students plant the first seeds of 2012. The students planted lettuce, radishes, broccoli, carrots and more, as they learned about the benefits of organic gardening, and techniques they can apply at school and at home. The students also enjoyed a cooking demonstration led by Seeds of Change executive chef, Chris Skolmutch. He taught the children simple recipes using organic vegetables and herbs they can grow in their own gardens to further reinforce healthy eating.
"It's such a thrill for me to see kids roll up their sleeves, plant seeds, watch them grow and taste the fruits of their labor," said Nolan. "Numerous studies have shown the connection between gardening, eating habits and school performance, and I'm a full believer in the many gifts gardening can offer students."
Event attendees left with a Seeds of Change seed packet, food samples including Certified Organic Mediterranean Style Rice and Organic Ready to Heat Spanish Style Rice and a Garden Starter Kit, a new product designed to make home gardening easy, educational and fun.
To participate in the "Sowing Millions, Growing Minds" program, designated representatives from U.S. elementary and middle schools can visit www.seedsofchange.com/donation to submit a donation request. The first 1,000 schools nationwide to sign up will receive a box of 100 randomly pre-selected organic vegetable, herb and flower seed packets. There is no purchase necessary, and just one order allowed per school. Recipients are responsible for a $14.95 shipping and handling fee, which is payable by credit card. For more information and complete program details, visit www.seedsofchange.com/donation.
About SEEDS OF CHANGE® Products
Seeds of Change (SeedsofChange.com) was founded in 1989 with a revolutionary vision: to make organically grown seeds available to gardeners and farmers, while preserving countless heirloom seed varieties in danger of being lost to the "advances" of modern industrial agriculture. While that vision still holds true today, the company has expanded to be a strong producer of Certified Organic Foods (SeedsofChangeFoods.com). Their line of Certified Organic Rice & Grain Blends and Simmer Sauces were inspired by the notion that great taste and sustainability go hand in hand.
For more than 20 years, Seeds of Change has been committed to promoting the use of sustainable organic agricultural practices. To demonstrate our commitment, the company contributes 1 percent of net sales to support and develop sustainable community based gardening and farming programs.
SOURCE Seeds of Change