In October, thousands of schools, early care and education sites, farms, communities and organizations across the country celebrate “farm to school” by engaging kids in hands-on learning experiences about food and agriculture, through school gardens and by filling lunch trays with healthy, local ingredients that nourish Pennsylvania kids and support our communities’ farmers and growers.

While we know it is only May, it is never too early to start planning your October celebrations! Here are some opportunities to share your ideas and ways to begin preparing:  

Find inspiration for your October festivities in this blog post from National Farm to School (FTS) Month 2023. Farm to school programs from across the state participated in Apple Crunch Days, local food taste tests, farm field trips and much more! 

Provide Input for National FTS Month 2024: In preparation for this October’s celebrations, we are looking for your input. Whether you are looking for ideas to celebrate, a farmer to procure local food items from, or lesson ideas for your classroom, we would love to hear from you. Please provide your input using this survey

Share Your Story: Now is a great time to plan how you will share your farm to school story leading up to and during National FTS Month. By sharing the benefits and successes of your program and activities with community members and government officials, you can generate more support for ongoing FTS efforts and inspire others.

  • Submit your story to the National FTS Month Storytelling Contest. Get creative and share your farm to school program and activities with your community for a chance to win some awesome prizes! Find more information here.
  • Capture your farm to school program with photos and videos! Is your school garden flourishing? Are your lunch trays filled with local food? Are you teaching creative agriculture and nutrition lessons in the classroom or community? Capture any of your current farm to school activities with photos and videos. These visuals can be used to promote your program by sharing on social media with parents/caregivers, school district board members, legislators and funders.
  • Check out this resource, Advocating for Farm to School: How to Host Site Visits, to help you showcase your farm to school program with government officials and community members during National FTS Month. Inviting these community leaders and members to witness your activities first-hand is a great opportunity for them to learn about “farm to school” and become supporters and champions of your efforts.
  • Share your story with local media. This media toolkit includes sample social media posts to highlight your program and resources for contacting local media outlets. Promoting your work publicly and through known news sources can garner attention and support from your community! 
  • Attend the next PA Farm to School Network virtual Open House to learn how farm to school practitioners utilize storytelling to share their successes, engage students and community members, secure funding, and advocate for farm to school policies.

Stay tuned for more information about  National FTS Month in October! We have some exciting plans in the works that we will be sharing in the coming weeks. Don’t forget to share your thoughts by completing this short survey about National FTS Month.

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