For the past 2 years, I’ve had the honor of working with the Edible Schoolyard NOLA and their Edible Evening Fundraiser. Edible Schoolyard NOLA was founded in 2006 and “changes the way children eat, learn, and live at five FirstLine public charter schools in New Orleans.” The program seeks to:
“improve the long-term well-being of our students, families, and school community, by integrating hands-on organic gardening and seasonal cooking into the school curriculum, culture, and cafeteria programs. We work to create a strong and vibrant school community where students are engaged in experiential learning through hands-on kitchen and garden classes and special events, and where students are provided with healthy, nutritious meals and snacks through school-based meal programs in an inviting and sustainable cafeteria setting.”
Held every March in Dreamkeeper Garden of Langston Hughes Academy, An Edible Evening is the single largest fundraiser for the program. Nearly 1,000 guests enjoyed locally sourced delicacies from 37 restaurants, a beer garden with tasting pours of local brews (including a few that made their debut at the party!), student-grown produce and handmade goods for purchase, silent auction, entertainment from 5 bands, and a night-closing dance party.
As a business owner, wife, and mom to three young children, carving out time to devote to charitable causes is no small task. However, when I learned about the Edible Schoolyard and its impacts on the lives of children in New Orleans, I couldn’t help but get involved. I hope that everyone reading this is able to find a cause that you feel strongly about, and that you can contribute to your community in your own way.
Suzanne P. Leckert, AICP