Schools increasingly want to develop garden programs for their students. The positive effects of school garden programs are numerous and varied: they can improve student nutrition, increase their social-emotional and interpersonal skills, enhance their connection to nature, boost test scores and even reduce neighborhood crime rates. However, many schools lack the necessary resources to carry out a comprehensive program. As a result, many school gardens end up full of weeds and debris rather than flourishing plants and engaged learners.
What sets the successful school gardens apart from the struggling ones? A leader. We meet the needs of the school, while engaging with the local community to achieve long-term and sustainable garden support including garden maintenance, educational programming, and the garden-to-cafeteria connection.
Founded in early 2014 by Teach For America alumni May Tsupros and Adam Zmick, Gardeneers partners with schools to create and sustain effective garden programs.
- Kathy Tsang – Hive Manager
- Alex Rosen – Hive Manager
- Brekke Bounds – Hive Manager
- Jared Reddrick – Garden Educator
- Ireri Unzueta Carrasco – Garden Educator
- Kelsey Gorman – Garden Educator
- Rolando Perez – Garden Educator
- Julia Goeke – Garden Educator
- Joe Seidman – Garden Educator
- Annemarie Pulawski – Garden Educator
- Rebecca MacDonald – Garden Educator
- Leah Goldbloom – Garden Educator
- Brittany Harthan – Garden Educator
- Kelli Day – MPH Practicum Student
On October 19, 2017, Gardeneers will host its 2nd Growing Healthy Futures Gala. This event will be the capstone of our year; gathering 350 supporters who are opening doors to a brighter, healthier future for Chicago students. This year, our hope is that you will join us in supporting Growing Healthy Futures for Chicago’s youth.
Since 2014, Gardeneers has grown to 26 Chicago schools serving under-resourced, food desert communities by providing direct, hands-on instruction with 1600 students in school gardens each week. School gardens are proven to have a profound impact on social and emotional wellness, academic achievement, and health and nutrition in at-risk students. Gardens serve as flourishing living laboratories where students can be active participants in their learning.
With the uncertainty of CPS, programs that offer positive opportunities for youth – like Gardeneers – are critical to Chicago’s education landscape. Gardeneers fills the need by creating outdoor garden classrooms and implementing school garden programs that empower children and their families to thrive.
The gala is a critical part of our efforts to increase community support for our highly impactful programs and invest in Chicago communities that need it the most. This year, we are on the path to building a successful event and your participation will help us reach our goal.
Tickets to the event are available at: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/gardeneers-2nd-annual-growing-healthy-futures-gala-tickets-36867752440
We are also in need of flowers, photographers, and alcohol. No donation is too big or small!