Williston, VT (May 30, 2014) As part of TODAY's Shine a Light series, a campaign to support worthy causes throughout the year, TODAY anchor, Carson Daly has chosen to shine a light on childhood hunger and healthy eating in America. He's teamed up with KidsGardening.org, a national nonprofit organization based in Vermont, that's on a mission to get a Garden in Every School® across the country.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in three kids in America is overweight or obese. Additionally, the USDA reports that one in four American kids live in food insecure homes, which means that some children are going to bed hungry. School gardens provide an opportunity for children to explore new foods, while giving easier access to fresh produce. On top on these benefits, gardening allows for hands-on learning, which better enables academic success while building skills that will last a lifetime.
To kick off this initiative, Daly started with a garden for three schools that share a campus in the Crown Heights neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York: P.S. 705, P.S. 22, and the Exceed Charter School.
″The children come in the morning eating food that has them on a sugar high,″ said Carlen Padmore, principal of P.S. 22. ″By the time they start class their first class, period one they're bouncing off the walls. By period three, they look like they're ready to go to sleep. ″
Daly's goal is to get the students to ditch fast food for fresh food.
″I know it's a tough sell,″ he told TODAY viewers this morning. ″I've got all summer to let this garden thing grow on them.″
The Brooklyn students are up for Daly's challenge and are excited to start growing their own food. Join KidsGardening.org and TODAY by supporting Daly's Crowdrise fundraiser and help put a Garden in Every School®. Create a team and raise $25 or more through June 15 for a chance to win a Garden Starter Package valued at over $500. Find out more and donate today: https://www.crowdrise.com/carson.
About KidsGardening.org: KidsGardening.org is a national 501(c)3 nonprofit organization based in Williston, VT that promotes learning through gardening to encourage personal growth. Their mission is to empower every generation to lead healthier lives, build stronger communities, and encourage environmental stewardship through educational gardening programs. Since 1982, they have provided nearly $4 million in grants to more than 10,000 schools and community-based organizations benefitting roughly 2 million youth across the country. Learn more about KidsGardening.org's programs and services at kidsgardening.org.