Victorian children will be supported to develop lifelong healthy eating habits, thanks to an Andrews Labor Government program that will set up more kitchen gardens and boost food education in schools across the state.
Minister for Health Jill Hennessy today visited Altona Meadows Primary School to launch the Playground to Plate grants program.
The $500,000 program is now open to Victorian Government primary schools in 24 local government areas, offering grants to help 100 schools enhance or establish a kitchen garden based on the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden philosophy.
Kitchen gardens encourage kids to get involved with growing, harvesting, preparing and sharing fresh, seasonal, delicious food and improve the overall health and wellbeing of the school community. Grants can be used to build garden beds or buy gardening tools, or kitchen equipment to cook healthy and tasty meals.
The program is open to 12 metropolitan and 12 rural local government areas that would most benefit from a Kitchen Garden program, with applications open until 8 June.
These include Brimbank, Casey, Darebin, Frankston, Greater Dandenong, Hobson’s Bay, Hume, Maribyrnong, Melton, Moreland, Whittlesea, Wyndham, Ararat, Central Goldfields, East Gippsland, Gannawarra, Hindmarsh, Latrobe, Loddon, Mildura, Moira, Northern Grampians, Pyrenees, and Swan Hill.
The kitchen gardens will help schools in these areas work towards encouraging children to grow, harvest, prepare and share fresh seasonal food.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Health Jill Hennessy
“Programs like Playground to Plate are an excellent opportunity for schools to teach gardening and cooking skills that emphasises the flavours as well as the health benefits of fresh, seasonal, delicious food.”
“Developing a food culture that values health and wellbeing during childhood helps to ensure lifelong healthy decisions and actions and build healthy habits into the future.”
Quote attributable to Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation CEO Rebecca Naylor
“The Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation is thrilled to be working in partnership with the Victorian Government to deliver the Playground to Plate grant scheme.”
“This is a fantastic opportunity for schools to establish or enhance kitchen garden program infrastructure to support their delivery of pleasurable food education – helping students develop lifelong positive food habits through fun, hands-on learning.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020