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                   where                      farming & education come together

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OUR MISSION

Sproutin' Up improves the health and wellness of under-resourced families in northern Colorado by providing access to fresh produce while educating youth on healthy lifestyles and sustainable agricultural practices.

 

WHY WE DO WHAT WE DO

According to the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey, 18.3% of Fort Collins residents live in poverty. Since 2000, Larimer County's childhood poverty rate increased 1.9 times faster than the state of Colorado and 6.8 times faster than the nation.

According to the CDC's Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, 75.2% of adults in Colorado consumed fruits and vegetables less than the recommended 5 times a day.

The CDC also identifies access to fresh fruits and vegetables through farmers' markets as playing an important role in reducing obesity.

 

MY STORY

In 2004 I took a job as a Community Health Educator. As part of my job, I went into mobile home communities and met kids after school. I would play active games with them, teach them a nutrition lesson and feed them a healthy snack. It was always my goal to give them a great experience and also give them a chance to try new foods. Over several years of teaching kids the importance of eating fresh fruits and vegetables and having them respond with, “My mom won’t buy that” or “That’s too expensive,” I wanted to do something about it. Even though that was frustrating to me, I understood. Think about it – if you can buy a box or bag of something that won’t go bad over fresh produce that might last a week, what are you going to buy when you’re stretching every dollar? I began wondering what would happen if I was able to take away every barrier to eating fresh produce.

So, that first year I started growing a garden in my backyard. I didn’t really have any formal gardening experience, but really believed I could do this. I put out notes to my friends and neighbors and asked them to donate any extra produce. After work, once a week, I would go to the same neighborhood where I had been educating for years and set up a farmers market. The residents were awesome! They were grateful (even when I had only 15 snap peas) and even brought plastic bags to share with others. Partway into that first year, I received a $300 grant and built four new beds in my backyard.

Well, we’ve grown! Since that first year, we’ve donated more than 4,500 pounds of produce to an average of 45 families per week! Now we’re getting even bigger and my hope now is to teach kids about gardening and food. To connect kids to the world around them and help people eat healthier.

 

Phone

(970) 391-2613

 

Locations

Free Markets

  • Poudre Valley Mobile Home Park
  • Salud Family Health Center - Laporte Location
  • Growcentia

Entrepreneurship 

  • Wellington Middle School
  • Lucille Erwin Middle School
  • Lesher Middle School

Apprenticeship Programs

  • Poudre Valley Mobile Home Park
  • Salud Family Health Center
  • Growcentia serving Alta Vista, Andersonville, and Buckingham

School Summer Garden Camp

  • Riffenburgh Elementary
  • Dunn Elementary
 

 

Four Farmers Salsa is grown and handcrafted by the Sproutin' Up teen farmers in Fort Collins, Colorado. Sproutin' Up is a non-profit providing opportunities for youth to gain first job skills and access real, fresh food where there is need. We serve ALL kids offering rich experiences for them to become powerful, confident and responsible citizens by participating in our programs and working on their own youth run farm.

100% of sales benefit the farmers' salaries and other Sproutin' Up programs.

Limited quantities available. 

 

 

The Four Farmers and summer intern at Relay Pentathlon 2017 Sponsored by Odell Brewing Company

The Four Farmers and summer intern at Relay Pentathlon 2017 Sponsored by Odell Brewing Company

 

Our 2018 Youth-Run CSA Farm Memberships are now on sale! What is a Youth-Run CSA Farm? We've been working with youth for nearly a decade and we're finally able to give them an opportunity to learn the ins and outs of running a farm. Our youth will be involved with every aspect of the farm - planting, tending, harvesting, and running our market. The kids who work on our farm earn a wage and learn both farming and social skills.

What can you expect? Tasty, wonderful produce and the chance to support Youth Development. Our youth will work side by side with farmers to learn the ropes while providing our customers with great service and even better produce!

 

There are several options for your 2018 Membership.

  1. Choose your pick up/delivery option.

  2. If you want to have your produce delivered, you must live in Bucking Horse, Rigden Farms, or Parkwood neighborhoods. If you choose this option, there will be a $100 fee (for the whole season - $5 per week) and the produce will be selected by the farmer, packaged, and delivered to your doorstep each week throughout the season.

  3. If you choose to pick up your produce, you'll be invited to "shop" our weekly market stand at the farm. We are offering a basic price for all memberships this year so please take what your family will use for the upcoming week as we won't be tracking how much you spend each week. Most weeks there won't be a limit on items and it will be first come, first serve as we strive to grow larger quantities each year. However, at the beginning of the season, you may find limits on certain items as they are just beginning to ripen. 

  4. If you would like to set up a monthly payment plan for 2018, please contact Anne at 970-391-2613. 

  5. Tell your friends!

 

Learn more about our farm by downloading our Membership Handbook and find out what we're growing by checking out our Growing List.

 

Become A Member Today

We are working on some exciting camp opportunities for Winter Break. Stay tuned and we'll have details soon.

 

 

 
USDA volunteers help plant seeds and re-plant starts for optimum growth.

USDA volunteers help plant seeds and re-plant starts for optimum growth.

 

we would love to have you join our team!.

Volunteer with Sproutin' Up by emails us at gretchin.sproutinup@gmail.com