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Summit Success

The Illinois Farm to School Summit was the first event hosted and coordinated by the Illinois Farm to School Network, and we had a great time in Springfield working with so many enthusiastic farm to school supporters!

Quick Facts:

  • Over 90 people from around the state registered for the conference, including teachers, food service staff, community advocates, and farmers.
  • Food service workers from school districts all over the state were able to quickly learn some advanced skills and cooked a huge meal from scratch.
  • We worked with five farms, including a local meat processor, to set our menu.
  • Composting at the Summit was able to divert over 50 pounds of food scraps from the landfill, meaning that we turned our local lunch into local soil!
  • We mapped out a strategic plan for farm to school in Illinois – which you will hear more about over the coming months.
  • Illinois farmers came out to speak about their participation in farm to school, including Wayne Sirles of Rendleman’s Orchards and Gary Neibrugge of the Krops 4 Kids Program.
  • The local CBS news affiliate brought a camera crew to document the incredible kitchen work – watch the coverage here!

We’ll share the strategic plan and workshop materials soon. Here are some great photos from the day, including the hands on cafeteria training and lunch!



Growing Health in Rural Coles County, IL

HealthyHoliday_MattoonIL_2014_10Seven Generations Ahead is extremely thankful for the support of the Lumpkin Family Foundation, which allows us to expand our work and advance healthy communities throughout Illinois. SGA’s Fresh From the Farm program created five successful workshops with Sarah Bush Lincoln Health Center in 2014. The workshops were designed as holistic supports to the work of SBL’s health educators and focused on family wellness and eating fresh, seasonal vegetables. Working with strong partners in Coles County allows us to make the issue of sustainable food relevant and compelling in a rural, corn-belt community. One nurse who attended some of our programs said, “I found all of the information useful and definitely want to share some of the recipe modification tips and suggestions to help patients and clients try to improve personal and family nutritional habits. And I have certainly enjoyed trying some of the changes and incorporating new vegetables.”