OUR GROWING PARTNERSHIP WITH THE 5+ A DAY CHARITABLE TRUST
SPS has been a member and supporter of United Fresh and the 5+ A Day Charitable Trust for around 15 years. The Trust is committed to increasing the consumption of fresh fruit and vegetables for better health. Work is focused on inspiration through education.
SPS sponsorship of the 5+ A Day education programme ensures gardening is a reality for thousands of kiwi students.
SPS seed packets provided to 5+ A Day are included in their education resources enabling students to put learning into practice. 5+ A Day lesson plans link to The New Zealand Curriculum, and cover growing and using fresh fruit and vegetables, companion planting and composting.
“Learning about growing fruit and vegetables is enhanced when students can physically plant seeds and watch them
grow,” says Carmel Ireland, Project Manager for 5+ A Day. “The great graphics and catchy names on the SPS seed packets are cool, and kids really want to plant them and eat what they grow,” says Carmel.
The seed varieties provided to 5+ A Day for 2017 include:
- Super sweet corn
- Cool carrot
- Powerful peas
- Brave broccoli
Recently the 5+ A Day team and mascot, Fredge, visited Parnell Early Childhood Centre (PECC) to celebrate their annual Healthy Eating event. PECC promotes 5+ A Day year-round with vegetable gardening being an integral part of the children’s learning about healthy eating. Fern Pereira, the Food Operations and Sustainability Manager at PECC had this to say:
“We’ve been using the seeds from the 5+ A Day educational kits for many years now. The seeds provide the children with so many learning opportunities, from obvious ones like planting and cooking, to science and sustainability. The seeds also help strengthen collaboration between our centre and the children’s homes. As we plant a lot of seeds, we end up with many more seedlings than we can fit in our gardens. Children are eager to take their seedlings home and we often receive stories and photos from parents telling us how the plants are doing and how the kids have been looking after them.”
In February and March this year SPS seeds were included in 5+ A Day mail outs to around 4,000 early childhood centres and 2,100 schools. The mail outs invited schools and early childhood centres to visit the new 5+ A Day website
(www.5adayeducation.org.nz) dedicated to educators, and order new curriculum-linked resources that include SPS
5+ A Day is working on plans to grow the education programme into secondary schools which provides further opportunities to promote the consumption of fresh vegetables and fruit.