The Soil Association (SA) and Pukka Herbs have joined forces in what they call an ‘inter-generational growing project’ which aims to bring the values of organic into schools, increasing kids’ knowledge about food provenance and the environment.
In the initiative – launched on 20 March to coincide with Grandparent Gardening Week – the SA’s Food for Life programme is joined by Pukka in a collaborative attempt to get children outdoors and galvanize their organic education by teaching them food growing skills.
The inter-generational aspect comes from the participation of the pupils’ relatives, lending the campaign its name, Know Your Roots, as parents and grandparents help the younger generations learn from nature by planting herbs alongside them.
Inter-generational learning is a great way of breaking down barriers and builds understanding between the old and young
The SA says health and nutrition is becoming increasingly more ‘centre stage’ in public consciousness, and growing ‘low maintenance plants’ such as herbs at home helps promote ‘positive health and nutrition’ and encourages a diverse diet.
The association draws upon new research published by the University of the West of England, which shows that fruit and veg intake is more likely to increase in pupils who ‘grow their own’, and suggests that the process helps children become ‘more aware of the links between food growing and the environment’. According to the study, attention and attainment are also thought to benefit from initiatives such as these.
James Cashmore, director of Food for Life, says: “Learning from nature starts with something as simple as growing your own herbs, and we are delighted to be working with Pukka to create opportunities for children to experience the joys and benefits of growing, and for older people to pass on skills that will help ensure knowledge is passed down and resurrected in our future generations. Inter-generational learning is a great way of breaking down barriers and builds understanding between the old and young. The exchange of ideas benefits all, through learning from the past and looking to the future.”
The Know Your Roots campaign continues until July.