LFA is committed to furthering farm to school programs and local food purchasing in Blaine County schools.
Farm to School
In 2014, LFA helped start the Hemingway FarmRaiser, a local foods fundraiser that raises thousands of dollars each year for Hemingway STEAM School and our regional food producers. As a result of this initiative, students now sell fresh-picked Idaho apples, organic veggies, local honey, and other homegrown foods and products instead of wrapping paper and candy produced in far parts of the world. Each year, the Hemingway FarmRai$er raises thousands of dollars for school educational programs while also benefiting our farmers/food artisans and the health of our community. Since 2014, LFA has provided critical support to ensure the success of the annual fundraiser. In 2019, the Hemingway FarmRaiser had its most successful year ever, with more than $30,000 in total sales and donations- more than $14,000 of which went to community food producers. Watch this video to see the Hemingway FarmRaiser in action!
Launched in early 2017, the Community School Cutthroat Cafe (formerly the 20/20 lunch program) provides farm to table meals to more than 100 K-12 students twice each week. Chef Mark Caraluzzi prepares fresh seasonal meals from scratch, sourcing as many ingredients as possible from sustainable regional farms. Local Food Alliance played a key role in taking this from concept to exciting reality, and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.
In late 2018, LFA was awarded a $5,000 grant to purchase and install four aeroponic Tower Gardens into classrooms at Hemingway STEAM School. The portable educational tools provide hands-on opportunities to grow and eat fresh food, and a living reference to deepen students’ connections to multiple academic subjects.
Installed in early 2019, the aeroponic Tower Gardens allow students to:
LFA helps teach local students about the food system! In 2016, we introduced the Johns Hopkins' FoodSpan curriculum to The Sage School and Wood River High School. The Sage School 10th and 11th grade teaching team adopted key parts of the curriculum.
In 2016 and 2017, Local Food Alliance sent teams of Blaine County educators to the Edible Schoolyard Academy (ESY) in Berkeley, Calif., to learn how to implement edible education and farm to school programs in Blaine County schools. Our ESY grads are currently using the lessons learned through the ESY program with children at Syringa Mountain School, Community School, and The Hunger Coalition's Hope Garden.
To help provide local kids with fresh, wholesome, locally sourced meals, LFA helped initiate and launch the valley's first farm to school lunch program at Syringa Mountain School in 2015. Through the 2017-18 school year, lunches were prepared fresh by Wood River Sustainability Center using up to 70 percent locally sourced ingredients.