(January 29, 2014) – DOLE Fruit Bowls® and Captain Planet Foundation are teaming up to host the “DOLE Fruit Bowls & Captain Planet Foundation’s Learning Garden Challenge.” The contest will recognize schools (K-8) that have established school gardens that provide an occasion for learning, environmental stewardship and an understanding of the role that fresh fruits and vegetables play in a healthy lifestyle.
School officials, parents or volunteers involved with the existing learning gardens are invited to enter the challenge for a chance to win up to $5,000, a one-year supply of DOLE Fruit Bowls, and essential Learning Garden tools from Captain Planet Foundation, including a mobile garden cooking cart, learning garden lessons and lesson supply bins.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with Captain Planet Foundation to honor environmental stewards across the United States,” said Stan Stuka, Senior Business Manager, DOLE Fruit Bowls. “We know that the best learning gardens have the power to teach students about good nutrition and how fruits and vegetables grow, even when they begin simply by planting seeds in up-cycled Dole Fruit Bowls.”
A panel of judges will select five finalists in April. Chef Linton Hopkins, James Beard Award winner for Best Chef in the Southeast, will select the Grand Prize Winner, who will receive $5,000 to benefit their school. The four other finalists will each receive $1,000, and all five will win a 1-year supply of DOLE Fruit Bowls and tools from Captain Planet Foundation to grow their learning garden. All five winners will be announced around Earth Day (April 22, 2014).
“We know that when kids engage with a learning garden, they develop an authentic understanding and appreciation for the natural world in which they live,” explained Leesa Carter, Executive Director of Captain Planet Foundation. “Through this challenge we will showcase the commitment that schools across the country have to growing a new generation of environmental stewards who develop an early palate for fruits and vegetables.”
To enter the challenge, applicants must visit www.dolegardenchallenge.com and complete an entry form and submit up to two photos detailing the school’s learning garden. The contest opens on January 29, 2014 and the entry deadline is March 12, 2014 at 11:59PM EST. To enter the challenge, and learn more, visit DoleGardenChallenge.com.