Picture courtesy of the children at East Tamaki School

The following is an extract from the first issue of the Garden to Table Newsletter, By SF Waitakere Member Catherine Bell.

“It’s been an exciting first year for the Garden to Table Trust and our three pilot schools, Meadowbank Primary, Peninsula Primary and East Tamaki Primary as we have all experienced a huge learning curve while implementing the programme and we have very much enjoyed watching both the gardens and the cooking programmes literally grow from strength to strength.

For the majority of participating children, this year has been a year of many firsts. The first tomato plucked from the vine and popped straight into their mouth, the first seed planted, the first worm wees collected, the first carrot chopped, the first egg broken. For some this will be the first time they have made their own fresh pasta and the first time they’ve ever eaten it. Perhaps this is their first opportunity to set the table and sit down and eat communally around it. Maybe, it’s the first time they have ever had to wash their own dishes. Whatever the case, the children have all had the same wonderful results: green thumbs and healthy tums.

Of course all of these achievements could never have been made without the amazing support we have received from the many volunteers and sponsors. We wish to thank them for all their help and contributions and we look forward to working with you all again in 2010.”

Among the pilot school there is also Peninsula Primary School, which is one of our SF Waitakere sponsored school for the setting up of a veggie garden.

Peninsula Primary school has spent this year developing a small vegetable garden on their grounds and slowly introducing the concept of Garden to Table to the children.

By the beginning of 2010 they will have employed their Kitchen and Garden Specialists and will be looking for volunteers to help implement the programme within the school.

The Garden to Table Trust has been established to facilitate a programme in NZ schools where children aged 7-10 will learn to grow, harvest, prepare and share food.

For more information about Garden to Table please visit their website