SOPHIE BERNSTEIN

GROW HEALTHY

“Healthy food abundance begins with a garden – at preschool! It is the perfect place.”

Story

„The shelves are just stacked with pretzels, chips and cookies“ – that’s not a real food bank! No good for kids to grow up on. A 12 year old knows this. Bling, came Sophie’s 13th B’day – with Bat Mitzwah, celebrations, ideas for community service, and gift money – to start a garden; at home, plus at the local preschool. “Yes, mom and dad, I am doing this, just watch me.” So did a flock a tiny kids, asking plenty of questions. “Preschoolers are eager to learn and try new things,” says Sophie. “School plots offer unique opportunities. Have them plant, pick, and taste their own school garden’s fresh vegetables, and they’ll know that tomatos don’t come … from the store”. When riots broke out in nearby Ferguson, Missouri, Sophie decided to address social injustices in her way; by greening that “food desert”. She launched Grow Healthy, offering low-income child care centres, schools and shelters to kick off gardens, along with a curriculum to teach about fresh food and gardening. Two gardens became 28, producing 30,000 pounds of free, fresh greens for families. Using a GIS tool to detect the most efficient locations, her 772 youth volunteers have gifted over 38,000 hours to building gardens, delivering workshops, and watching kids get their hands dirty, pick and taste the fruits of their love and labor. There’s a million preschools on Earth, and as many reasons to have a garden, be it micro, vertical, on the roof, along the road or at the park.

[ FOOD ]

AGE : 13

  • DO IT 70%
  • REACH 55%
  • EFFECTS 65%
  • RISK 50%

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