Wells Fargo and National Fish and Wildlife Foundation grant

CNGF (California Native Garden Foundation) would like to thank Wells Fargo and the NFWF (National Fish and Wildlife Foundation) for accepting and funding our grant request. Our mission is to demonstrate the beauty, garden worthiness, and ecological appropriateness of aquaponics and California native gardens which can lead to increased knowledge of native plants and healthy food, and increase their availability.

With the first leg of this grant, we’ve created an aquaponics system at Independence High School located in San Jose. The system is being run by students in an after school club, led by our Project Manager and interns. Classes are being taught in the greenhouse, and we are ready to harvest and sell our first crop of lettuce this week.

Students from Lincoln High School in San Jose learning about the aquaponics system.

Students from Independence High School in San Jose learning about the aquaponics system.

An aquaponics system has many benefits for a community: It can diminish farmland requirements, and increase local production. It is a practice and a way to teach water conservation and environmental awareness, eliminating the use of chemical fertilizers. It also reconnects the community with food, and farming with ecosystems, giving students a well rounded view of food production and sustainability.

Fish Expert Cal Hansen teaches how to transfer and release fish

Fish Expert Cal Hansen teaches how to transfer and release fish

This aquaponics system will allow students to learn outside the classroom to grow healthy food, will educate students on where their food comes from, and help students eat healthy locally grown food. In addition, the aquaponics system is a great resource that teachers can use to teach multiple subjects such as science, math and econ. Using the system to teach can increase retention by capturing students’ interest, and makes activities and lessons more fun; who doesn’t love looking at fish?
Aquaponics ponds at the Middlebrook Center's ELSEE Gardens in downtown San Jose, CA

Aquaponics ponds at the Middlebrook Center’s ELSEE Gardens in downtown San Jose, CA

We are currently in the planning phase of building two more aquaponics systems at two other High Schools – one at Downtown College Prep, and one at Lincoln High School

 

 

From everyone at CNGF,

We want to take the time to show you our appreciation of continued support from companies like Wells Fargo as well as our own community volunteers and interns. We could not do this good work if it were not for you.

Thank you for helping us to make our vision a reality.

Have a most joyous holiday season.

 

Watercress thriving in ELSEE Aquaponics Gardens.

Watercress thriving in ELSEE Aquaponics Gardens.

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