SACRAMENTO — The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) has awarded $223,900 for organizations to enhance agricultural education and leadership opportunities under the 2021 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, $1.5 million has been awarded to support agricultural education and leadership development. Current grant recipients include:
1. California Association, Future Farmers of America: $190,000
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 338 school chapters throughout the state that provide integral leadership instruction through the FFA student organization to 92,688 student members. This project will increase student access to information about career, leadership, and programmatic opportunities.
2. Pala Band of Mission Indians: $9,500
The Tribal Seeds, Pala Plants! program proposes to develop an agricultural education and career awareness program for approximately 230 K-12 students, focusing on practical gardening experience, four local informational farm tours, and an interactive mentorship provided by San Diego State University. A school garden at the Pala Youth Center will use the funding to purchase and seedlings to teach students about plant life cycles, water usage, and growing culturally significant gourds to make rattles. This program will serve to enhance the students understanding of agricultural experiences, support agricultural curriculum development and implementation, and promote practical career awareness opportunities.
3. Sacramento River Watershed Program: $9,400
The Oliview Community Building Farm Project will provide a mentorship program to ten young adults, through a restorative justice, responsive, and all-inclusive work experience. This project will teach participants how to grow food on a community scale and expose them to farming career opportunities. Participants will receive a stipend and the soft skills necessary to responsibly plan for entrepreneurship in the farming industry.
4. 48th District Agricultural Association: $9,000
The 48th District Agricultural Association will provide updated school garden curriculum and lesson plans to teachers that cover the development of planting and growing for them and their students at no cost. The developed curriculum will be provided by college students in the Urban Agriculture Program, by California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. This project will reach over 500 students and provide goods and supplies for gardens that coordinate with the curriculum.
5. California Farmland Trust: $6,000
This project will provide 40 elementary educators and 1,000 elementary students with classroom resource kits and training related to the importance of protecting and conserving farmland. California Farmland Trust will provide a poster-based and hands-on curriculum activity designed for third through fifth grade students that can be conducted virtually or in-person. In addition, propose to have a Spanish demonstration video online to support classroom materials. The developed curriculum and activities will teach students valuable lessons about where their food comes from, math concepts, and extension activities to incorporate language arts, history, and visual and performing arts.
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/
–California Department of Food and Agriculture