180042 My Garden Vegetables: A Pilot Study of a Gardening, Art, and Nutrition Education Program

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Kelly Jones , East Carolina University, Greenville, NC
Carrie Falvo, RD , Department of Behavioral and Community Health Sciences, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
Tammy Thomas, MSW, MPH , Graduate School of Public Health, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
Christopher Keane, ScD , Behavioral and Community Health Sciences, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
A wealth of anecdotal evidence reveals that gardening education programs improve fruit and vegetable consumption, nutritional knowledge, and even academic achievement. A pilot project of a gardening, art, and nutrition education program entitled “My Garden Vegetables” was implemented at an urban Summer Camp to provide insight into the use of urban gardening as a nutrition education tool. The goal of “My Garden Vegetables,” a university-community partnership, was to promote vegetable and fruit consumption and physical activity through participatory gardening. Activities included growing tomatoes, watering the garden, painting murals for the garden space, learning MyPyramid, creating healthy snacks,charting team vegetable and fruit consumption, and creating healthy and unhealthy food collages. Food preference and food frequency instruments

were pilot tested on all children in the camp who attended. Camp staff satisfaction was measured. Most staff agreed that the program helped children's thinking about healthy eating, although some felt that the children did not enjoy the nutrition education part of the program. Our recommendations include: to create more age appropriate lesson plans and

to be more prepared to deal with young urban youth, who have shorter

attention spans.

Learning Objectives:
Articulate the benefits of an gardening, art, and nutrition program for urban youth Describe activities that had positive influence on nutrition. Discuss how to incorporate a gardening, art, and nutrition program into an existing program for youth.

Keywords: Nutrition, Youth

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have no relationship with a commercial entity.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.