Part of Petaluma Bounty’s farm-based education programs, Active Living In Vibrant Environments (A.L.I.V.E) is an innovative collaboration between Petaluma Bounty (PB) and formally trained Nutritionists that provides families with hands on farm-based learning, nutrition education, as well as six weekly Bounty Bags from the Petaluma Bounty Farm, full of fresh vegetables and fruits. The purpose of the A.L.I.V.E. Program is to provide families with the tools, information, motivation, and food to make lasting healthy lifestyle changes related to participants’ food choices and physical activity level.
The Bounty Farm is a crucial component of the A.L.I.V.E. Program because it reconnects the families with the people and the land that provides them the food in their Bounty Bags, which impacts participants’ attitudes toward healthy food and choices, as well as increases their willingness to try new foods.
A.L.I.V.E. came out of the five year P.L.A.Y. collaboration with Petaluma Health Center and is based on lessons learned and best practices. In 2016, Petaluma Health Center was unable to continue the collaboration due to limited resources. But the two agencies continue to work together on a variety of initiatives, including the Farmacy.
The A.L.I.V.E. Program offers participants an educational journey into farming and whole foods nutrition. It is designed to encourage young people and their families to eat more fruits and vegetables, and develop an awareness of how their food is grown. Participants have the opportunity to explore their personal and cultural relationships with food, and possible ways of incorporating new healthy foods in their diet. We introduce participants to new foods and demonstrate ways to incorporate these foods into their diets. Our curriculum utilizes educational material from USDA “Dig-In” curriculum, MyPlate, and many other sources.
Petaluma Bounty has created the A.L.I.V.E. Program, for mostly CalFresh recipients who have a child or children between the ages of 5-14. Participants of ALIVE are usually facing the burden of low incomes and choices related to purchasing cost effective foods. Low-income families have less resources and capacity to make the necessary changes in their daily lives, food choices, and environment to lead to healthier lifestyles.
Partner Contributions to the A.L.I.V.E. Program:
The activities of the Bounty Farm support our mission by increasing low-income community members’ access to healthy, local, sustainably grown food. It also facilitates community members to reconnect with their food and rediscover how it is grown. With the support of hundreds of volunteers, service groups, and school groups, we grow food in community for community.
We invite a local nutritionist to provide farm-based nutrition education to support and empower families to make small food habit changes for healthier lifestyles. The nutritionist invites all participants to think about their food choices, recognizing that our choices around food are very complex and personal, and identify things that are working and not working in their diets. We provide the information and tools around nutrition so that participants can choose to make changes, in lessons such as: Healthy Eating on a Budget, Incorporating more Fruits & Vegetables in your Diet, Whole vs. Processed Foods, Principles of Healthy Eating, and more.
Petaluma Health Center
Petaluma Health Center was the founding partner of P.L.A.Y. (Petaluma Loves Active Youth) and provided the clinical and nutritional background for five years. Petaluma Health Center staff still consult and support Bounty initiatives but are not responsible for Bounty’s nutrition initiatives.
Approach and Objectives:
The A.L.I.V.E. Program is an six week farm-based program that provides parents and children with whole foods, nutrition education and farm-based education, as well as six weekly Petaluma Bounty Farm produce bags full of fresh vegetables and fruits. The participatory and active education program aims to empower children and their families to make healthier food choices, build skills in growing food, and learn about how to participate in our food system in an empowered way.
Past participants declared an increase in willingness to try new fruits & vegetables, an increase in knowledge of where food comes from, what it takes to grow it, and why some food is more expensive than others. One hundred percent of past participants also agreed that after participating in the ALIVE program, they had better understanding why it is important that everyone has access to affordable, fresh produce & knew of more options to access affordable, fresh produce.
The goal of the A.L.I.V.E. Program is provide information and tools to children and their families in order to make healthy lifestyle changes and informed food choices. Identified objectives that will help us reach those goals include:
- Provide nutrition education to children and their families, including trying new foods.
- Provide farm-based educational workshops for youth and their families in the cultivated fields of Bounty Farm
- Provide participating children and their families with healthy, fresh produce.
- Continue to collect and analyze data related to making fresh produce and information available to participants.
- Ensure families leave program knowing how to access healthier and more local food within the community
How YOU can help:
- Volunteer: Check out our Volunteer Page to see ways you can help!
- Make a donation to the sponsor a family’s Food Bag!
Any amount is appreciated. All donations are tax deductible.
$1 donated = $1 food for local families in need.
1 food bag, 1 week = $22 1 food bag, 6 weeks = $132
To Pay by check:
Memo Line: A.L.I.V.E. Food Bags
Mail to: Petaluma Bounty
1500 Petaluma Blvd South
Petaluma, CA 94952
To pay by credit card or PayPal, click on our donate button.