Established in 2008, the Garden to Table Trust is a registered charity working with thousands of primary- school-aged children all across New Zealand, helping them discover a love for fresh food and develop important skills that will last a lifetime. We do this through the Garden to Table programme, which is all about getting kids into school gardens and kitchens, letting them get stuck in, and in the process “teaching” them about food: where it comes from, what is in it, how to harvest it, prepare it and share it. The programme is curriculum-integrated, designed to engage the curiosity of the students, and most importantly – fun!
We currently have over 180 schools across New Zealand offering the Garden to Table programme to their students. Through these schools, we estimate that over 16,000 children will have the opportunity to get their hands dirty, dig the soil, watch the plants grow, and then harvest and cook the veggies they have nurtured, teaching them important life skills which they can share with family and whanau.
Garden to Table receives no government funding and is reliant on the generous donations of our corporate partners, grant funders and donors. The Jenkins Charitable Foundation has generously provided funding towards development of our CRM so that we can communicate and engage with all our amazing volunteers on a regular basis, helping to keep them up to date with the latest Garden to Table news as well as having access to important programme information, training opportunities, and our online resources and information. These developments will also help to improve operational efficiencies and provide information which we can use to inform how we continue to support our schools and volunteers effectively. We rely heavily on volunteers to support us in a number of ways, including working in the school kitchens and gardens, helping at events, fundraising, and helping out in the office, so this project is incredibly important to us.