Plano, Texas-based AdvoCare International announced that the AdvoCare Foundation, established to make an impact on the safety and health of children in need through a focus on fighting childhood obesity, recently made a $25,000 donation to REAL School Gardens, a non-profit dedicated to helping disadvantaged children achieve academic success through experiential outdoor learning.
The contribution will be used to support the rebuilding and revitalizing of the garden at Charles Rice Learning Center in south Dallas. Team members from AdvoCare, including AdvoCare founding family members, Allison Levy, President of the AdvoCare Foundation Board of Directors and Executive Vice President at AdvoCare, and approximately 30 local area Distributors will join Mary Freeman, Texas Regional Executive Director of REAL School Gardens, to enhance the garden.
“We love playing matchmaker between donors and worthwhile organizations in local communities,” said Mary Freeman, Texas Regional Executive Director of REAL School Gardens. “Learning literally comes to life in the garden—watching volunteers and students come together to make an impact is a wonderfully inspiring experience. Plus, studies show that learning gardens, when connected to intensive teacher training, can improve academic performance and increase a child’s adoption of a healthier, active lifestyle, making the AdvoCare Foundation the perfect partner for this initiative.”
REAL School Gardens will impact 15 markets across the country by 2020, ensuring that students get out of their desks and into learning, which is at the root of the organization’s mission. To date, REAL School Gardens has served more than 68,000 students with partnerships in more than a dozen districts across the U.S., while helping to boost academic performance with experiential outdoor lessons. At Charles Rice Learning Center, students and teachers alike will learn a variety of lessons in the garden from life sciences to health and nutrition, growing everything from perennials to herbs and vegetables.
“This garden project is near and dear to our hearts, and we’re blessed to be able to give to REAL School Gardens as we know what an impact healthy choices can have on our lives,” said Allison Levy. “We can’t wait to dig in the dirt with everyone and see the children experience the fruits of a collective effort with wonderful community partners like REAL School Gardens and Charles Rice Learning Center. Hands-on learning in a school garden allows kids to champion the cause of living a healthy lifestyle while increasing nutritional awareness by connecting children to the process of growing fruits and vegetables. AdvoCare was established with one simple mission: to be advocates who care, so we’re thrilled to grow this partnership.”
REAL School Gardens creates learning gardens that grow successful students by building outdoor classrooms and providing extensive teacher training on how to use school gardens to boost academics. Over the past 12 years, REAL School Gardens has partnered with more than 126 schools and trained 4,340 teachers, and now reaches more than 68,400 children every day. In 2016, the organization launched a strategic growth plan to bring REAL School Gardens to a total of six geographic regions and 15 markets by 2020. Once the expansion is complete, the organization will engage 225,000 children each year in daily REAL-world learning. For more information, visit www.realschoolgardens.org.
The AdvoCare Foundation focuses on the impact of childhood obesity in an effort to help fulfill its larger mission—to help all children be happy, healthy and safe. The AdvoCare Foundation is attacking obesity by supporting organizations across the country whose work directly impacts the safety and health of children in need.