The Youth Outreach program supports gardening related youth activities in Buncombe County. The program is divided into two main areas: School Garden Grants and Gardening Education for Youth. Our committee motto is “WE GROW GARDENERS!”
School Garden Grants
The mission of the School Garden Grants program is to provide monetary grants and support to public schools, including charter schools, located in Buncombe County. Selected schools integrate gardening principles into their curriculum, connecting students to nature, and thereby leading to a healthy, sustainable community. Since its inception in 2007, our School Garden Grants program has provided over $50,000 to Buncombe County public schools to start or expand a school garden. The online application process is announced to public school principals and on this website.
The School Garden Grants application period takes place annually in January. The online process is announced to public school principals and on this website.
School Garden Grants applications are evaluated to determine how well the applicant’s program meets the Extension Master GardenerSM mission. The amount of grants awarded will vary based on the number of schools applying and the funds available. Typical grants range from $100 to $500, with the average close to $300.
In reviewing grant requests, we consider the following criteria:
- A plan with clear goals and objectives that show how the program will be integrated into the curriculum;
- A sustainable program that shows that the garden is an extension of the classroom;
- Examples of how horticultural and evidence-based information and research-based principles are used, including in math and science;
- Consistency of goals that match the budget of the grant; and,
- A list of anticipated commitments from staff, parents and community partners.
To inquire about the School Garden Grant program, please email: email@example.com.
Gardening Education for Youth
The Gardening Education portion of our youth program works with the Extension 4-H agent to offer soil and vermiculture curriculum in age appropriate classroom situations and leads 4-H summer programs, and engages in other youth education opportunities.
Youth Outreach works with youth focused organizations by presenting fun and exciting garden programs to kids in school gardens, public libraries, after school programs and summer day-camps to provide in-person education and referrals to educational resources. Our programs provide hands-on learning experiences for children and their families.
New in 2023, Master GardenerSM volunteers have developed “Programs In A Box” (PIBs) to use when presenting to children at these venues. We offer the following gardening related topics: Worms, Soil and Water, Plants, Flowers, Bees & Butterflies, and Vegetables. These highly interactive programs include books and craft activities related to the topic.
To inquire about having a gardening related program at your youth organization event, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org