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WFM Hosts Metro School Summit

West Denver Store, Denver, CO

Overview:  The West Denver Metro, in partnership with Slow Food and Denver Urban Gardens, presented the inaugural School Garden Summit, an event that brought together parents, teachers, school district representatives, and community partners to share resources and network.

Goal: Identify and fill a significant need within our shared metro community.

The Need: After seeing Garden Grant data sent out this past fall and speaking with our community members, we pinpointed a community need for information, networking, and resources to provide schools in our surrounding districts with gardens. To address that need, we decided to help connect our community with as many resources as possible.

The Numbers:

  • Over 100 attendees including: parents, teachers, school district representatives, and community partners
  • 8 school districts and 45 schools represented from all over Colorado (from Greely to Aurora, and all the way to Bailey).
  • 3 sponsoring partners (Slow Foods Denver, Whole Foods Market, Denver Urban Garden)
  • 12 participating community partners
  • 3 district wellness coordinators
  • $700 in total sponsorship fees (including printing, giveaways and goodies)
  • 100 media kits full of information about Garden Grants and local Whole Foods resources
  • 50 new email sign ups

The Results:

  • Informed attendees and community partners about all the resources we offer at Whole Foods
  • Spread the message about the Whole Kids Foundation and Garden Grants
  • Made store-specific connections with parents, teachers, and administrators from schools around the West Denver Metro
  • Created an event that facilitated networking and resource sharing between groups of people that, previous to this, had not been connected

What’s Next:

  • A metro 5% day for the Garden to Cafeteria program in Jefferson County
  • Planning for next year!

This entire event stemmed from a coffee meeting and request for a donation of green baskets about 2 month ago. It is amazing what our stores do when they work together with our communities.