[F]ood for Life is about making good food the easy choice for everyone – making healthy, tasty and sustainable meals the norm for all to enjoy, reconnecting with where food comes from, teaching how it’s grown and cooked, and championing the importance of well-sourced ingredients. Its aim is to engage children, parents, staff and the wider community to create a powerful voice for long-term change. Schools work to a bronze, silver or gold standard, evidencing their achievements against agreed criteria. Food for Life is a Soil Association programme.
Crosby Ravensworth School are at the forefront of involving Cumbrian children in this important project, raising awareness in the community. The Westmorland Family, who run Tebay Services, Tebay Services Hotel and the Rheged Centre have partnered with the Soil Association to fund four local primary schools to take part in the Food for Life School Award programme.
As part of the launch week, children have made their own apple juice at Beech Tree Farm, Reagill with the help of proprietors Alister and Jane Woodstrover, parents of children in the school. On Friday, the whole school of 25 pupils visited local market-gardening cooperative, Vista Veg, where Lynne Barnes helped the children with a number of projects including taking graftings of blackcurrant bushes which it is hoped will reap a harvest for the school in years to come.
Parent Marie-Louisa Raeburn said: “We are thrilled that Crosby Ravensworth school is so proactive in involving our children in this important campaign, educating them for a healthy future.”
Headteacher Duncan Priestley said: “There is an ever increasing interest and important focus on knowing exactly where the ingredients on our plates come from, and that they are quality products. Involving our children in this important initiative is key and its fantastic that they really enjoy it as well.”
Claire Urquhart, Community Manager for the Westmorland Family said: “This is a really exciting project for us to be involved, giving local primary school children the chance to immerse themselves in an exciting enterprise project in which they learn about food and farming, whilst encouraging a better understanding of food and its benefits to life and health and wellbeing. As a food business we are also able to offer the schools ongoing support and knowledge from our teams plus links with some amazing local food producers.”
Further plans include a visit to Askham Hall Edible Gardens, where everything on the menu is produced from within the kitchen gardens.