SACRAMENTO — The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) has awarded $247,956 for organizations to enhance agricultural education and leadership opportunities under the 2022 California Special Interest License Plate (CalAgPlate) grant program.
The CalAgPlate program is funded with proceeds generated through the sale of special interest, agriculture-themed license plates through the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). Over the past several years of administering this program, $1.9 million has been awarded to support agricultural education and leadership development. Current grant recipients include:
1. Anaheim Union High School District: $9,800.00
This project will help Title 1 students focus on agriculture education, career awareness, and leadership development while filling students’ nutritional gaps by developing a community garden and mini orchard. Students will have the opportunity to taste test the produce they grow, create healthy dishes representative of their identities, and develop their self-efficacy. Having access to healthier foods for students from low socioeconomic backgrounds inspires social change by addressing food insecurity within the community. The objective is for students to be empowered to create change through sustainable gardening techniques that they can practice at home.
2. California Association, Future Farmers of America: $210,000.00
CalAgPlate grant funding will continue to provide support for student leadership and program development for California’s statewide Future Farmers of America (FFA) program, which has 355 school chapters throughout the state that provide integral leadership instruction through the FFA student organization to 98,969 student members. This program will increase student access to information about career, leadership, and programmatic opportunities.
3. California Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom: $8,870.00
The California Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom will offer a new pre-kindergarten educational unit that focuses on Life on the Farm while providing a traditional thematic unit that introduces modern agriculture. Students will be led through a visually engaging video to gain an understanding of what California farming looks like today. This project has the ability to reach approximately 12,000 educators in public and private school sites within California.
4. California Women for Agriculture – Ventura County Chapter: $5,000.00
The California Women for Agriculture will conduct a Farm Day at a local Ventura County school to provide students with fundamental information about California agriculture. Students will be invited to attend the event and rotate through a variety of interactive stations each focusing on a different aspect of agriculture. Organizations such as local farmers, 4-H, and Future Farmers of America students will bring equipment, animals, produce, and other educational farming-related subjects to teach local elementary school students about the importance of the agricultural economy which operates right in the students’ communities.
5. San Joaquin County Foundation for Agricultural Education: $10,000.00
This project will help teach young consumers about San Joaquin County’s booming agricultural industry and nutrition education through four field days each school year. These field days include experiential learning opportunities through presentations and hands-on displays about agriculture and nutrition education. Approximately 10,000 third-grade students will participate in the AgVenture field day events.
6. San Joaquin County Office of Education: $4,286.00
The Agricultural Careers Exploration project will offer opportunities for San Joaquin County junior and senior high school students to learn about agriculture careers from current agricultural industry professionals. Students will visit up to eight different agriculture businesses to meet agriculture industry professionals, tour their operations, and discuss required training, growth opportunities, and impact on California agriculture within the field.
Please support agricultural education and the CalAgPlate program by purchasing a special interest license plate from the DMV.
More information is available at http://www.cdfa.ca.gov/egov/calagplate/
–California Department of Food and Agriculture