About ASAP

Growing Minds is a program of Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project. ASAP’s mission is to help local farms thrive, link farmers to markets and supporters, and build healthy communities through connections to local food.

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NC Farm to Preschool Network

In 2015, ASAP and the NC Child and Adult Food Program (CACFP) convened preschool stakeholders from across the state. This resulted in the creation of the NC Farm to Preschool Network.

The Network, facilitated by ASAP and NC CACFP, convenes a monthly conference call. Network members participated in a retreat in early 2016. The Network has defined farm to preschool as: Farm to Preschool enhances the health and education of young children by developing systems and experiential learning that connects children and the their families with local food and farms. Farm to Preschool includes any type of childcare that incorporates local foods through: meals and snacks, taste tests, lessons, farmer visits, cooking, growing food, and/or community and parent involvement.

The group also developed a purpose statement: The purpose of the NC Farm to Preschool Network is to connect, educate, develop and share resources between community and state partners, farmers, early childhood educators and families to spark the local foods movement in early childhood education environments (adopted October 2016).

Reach for the Stars with Farm to Preschool: Aligning Early Childhood Environmental Rating Scale (ECERS) with Farm to Preschool, is a resource developed by the Network in September 2016. Its purpose is to help child care centers and family child care homes integrate farm to preschool activities into their curriculm and practices while addressing the Early Childhood Environment Rating Scale (ECERS).

For more information about the North Carolina Farm to Preschool Network, please contact Emily Jackson, emily@nullasapconnections.org, 828-236-1282 ext. 101

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