About the Hawaiʻi Island School Garden Network (HISGN)
On Hawaiʻi Island, there is a growing commitment to food self-reliance and land stewardship that promotes sustainable island communities. An Island of Hawaiʻi food system report prepared by the Rocky Mountain Institute in 2007 identifies the development and promotion of school gardens as an initiative that can substantially contribute to the development of a strong local food economy while helping youth with increased opportunities for health-promoting exercise and nutrition.
The goal of the Hawaiʻi Island School Garden Network (HISGN) is to help island schools build gardening and agricultural programs that will significantly contribute to the increased consumption of locally produced food by involving students, their school communities, and their family networks in food production.
Based on the Rocky Mountain Institute’s research, The Kohala Center established HISGN in September 2007. Today, the program works with more than 60 of Hawai‘i Island’s public, charter, and private schools, assisting garden leaders, school faculty, and administrators in the creation and implementation of gardening and agricultural programs. Our work includes identification of funding opportunities and local agricultural resources, volunteer development, curriculum development, and professional development for garden and classroom teachers. Networking opportunities and events bring this important work to the community.
School garden programs create hands-on learning laboratories for students to deepen their understanding of the sciences and nutrition, incorporating social studies, language arts, and math into meaningful learning activities in outdoor classrooms. We welcome public contributions to HISGN in the form of funding, shared resources, and volunteering.
Growing School Learning Gardens: A Summary of the 2012 Statewide School Garden Survey
The Hawai‘i Farm to School and School Garden Baseline Survey
2012 Farm to School & School Garden Survey Summary: Hawai‘i Island
Just the Hawai‘i Island results from the Hawai‘i Farm to School and School Garden Baseline Survey