Farm to School Funding

Growing Minds Farm to School Funding Opportunities

We want to help fund your farm to school project in Western North Carolina! Mini-grants are available for schools and organizations to engage children in the following farm to school experiences:

  • Local food taste tests & cooking demonstrations
  • Incorporating local food into meals or snacks
  • Farm field trips or farmer visits to classrooms/organizations
  • Growing edible gardens
  • Farm to school literature

Pre-k through 12 schools, homeschool groups, teacher and nutrition education programs serving children and families are eligible to apply. Schools/organizations must be located throughout our 18 westernmost counties of North CarolinaFunding can be used to start new projects, or to expand upon existing activities. 

Farm to School Mini-Grant

Mini-grant applications are due every month on the 15th through April 15, 2023 and will be awarded by the 30th of each month.

ASAP’s Growing Minds Farm to School mini-grant program connects schools/preschools throughout our 18 westernmost counties of North Carolina with local agriculture and gives children positive experiences with healthy local foods through the four components of farm to school: farm field trips, local food cooking and taste tests, school gardens, and local food served in school cafeterias. Farm to School Activity mini-grants will be provided up to $250. 

If you’re unsure whether your school is located within our 18-county service area or you have questions about your eligibility to apply for funding, please email us at growingminds@nullasapconnections.org before submitting your application. We are unable to provide mini-grants to schools located outside of our 18-county service area. 

Farm to Preschool Equipment Mini-Grants

Mini-grant applications are due every month on the 15th through April 15, 2023 and will be awarded by the 30th of each month.

ASAP’s Growing Minds program is providing mini-grants to preschools throughout our 18 westernmost counties in North Carolina to purchase food processing and prepping equipment. The goal is to help preschools provide fresh, local foods in meals and/or snacks to their students. Mini-grants will be provided up to $500. 

Funds can be used to support efforts in the kitchen or classroom. Some examples of equipment that could be purchased with this mini-grant include: refrigerators, freezers, crockpots, cutting boards, and utensils. Larger projects can also be supported with this mini-grant. 

If you’re unsure whether your school is located within our 18-county service area or you have questions about your eligibility to apply for funding, please email us at growingminds@nullasapconnections.org before submitting your application. We are unable to provide mini-grants to schools located outside of our 18-county service area. 

The criteria for selection will be based on the following areas:

  • Priority will be given to Head Start and/or CACFP programs and schools with high rates of free and reduced lunch
  • Proposals that plan for hands-on student experiences, and/or authentic farm experiences (please plan your activity with the idea that smaller groups make the experience better).
  • Integration of funded project into a unit of study and connection to Standard Course of Study/Common Core requirements
  • Connection with other Farm to School components (i.e. you are asking for funding for local food cooking but also plan to tie it to the school garden).
  • Priority will be given to classes that have not received this grant in the past

What is required of Farm to School Funding recipients?

After you are awarded Farm to School Funding and the activity has taken place, you are required to:

  • Complete a brief online reflection about the activity that you used the grant funds for. (Reflection form will be provided in your award notification.)
  • Submit electronic pictures of the activity.
  • Submit photo permission slips (provided by ASAP) for all students in the pictures you submit. Please note that if awarded funding for your school garden, you will be required to submit photo permission forms for all of your students prior to receiving a check for your funds.
  • If you or your school includes mention of this grant in any publications or announcements, we ask that you credit ASAP’s Growing Minds program and send us a copy. We will provide a document with talking points for any publications or announcements that you do around your farm to school activity and receiving the grant.

Please note that if you do not fulfill the above stated requirements, funds may need to be returned and / or you may not receive Farm to School Funding in the future.

Questions?

Please feel free to contact our team at growingminds@nullasapconnections.org if you have questions or would like suggestions such as farms to visit, recipes to try, or tips for connecting an existing project to other farm to school components.

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