A Strategic Partnership Brings Purple Asparagus’ Dynamic Curriculum to HSC

September 09, 2020

By Rochelle Davis, Healthy Schools Campaign President + CEO

Healthy Schools Campaign has a long track record of helping schools create environments where children can learn and thrive. We do this through our advocacy at the local, state and national levels and our on-the-ground work with parents, teachers and principals in 30+ schools in Chicago’s Latinx and Black communities.

Our work in Chicago is strengthened by our partnerships with nonprofits and community-based organizations that provide nutrition education, sports programming and hands-on garden learning to Chicago Public Schools students. One of those dynamic partners is Purple Asparagus, an incredible organization led by its founder Melissa Graham, that has brought its Delicious Nutritious Adventures programming to students and classrooms across Chicago. Purple Asparagus has a measurable impact on the students it serves – after a year of participating in Delicious Nutritious Adventures in the classroom, 76% of students ate more fruits and 67% more vegetables!

Purple Asparagus has successfully provided its programming to students in Chicago in-person, but COVID-19 has now made that impossible. Earlier this year, this realization led Melissa to approach us to see if Healthy Schools Campaign would be interested in integrating their program into Healthy Schools Campaign’s existing resources for teachers and students – both in Chicago and across the country. And of course we said yes! We are very honored for the trust that Purple Asparagus’ Board of Directors has placed in Healthy Schools Campaign and excited to be able to offer its excellent nutrition education curriculum free of charge to educators across the country.

I want to thank Melissa and acknowledge the great work she has done, and the wonderful partner Purple Asparagus has been to Healthy Schools Campaign over these many years. Purple Asparagus has supported Healthy Schools Campaign’s advocacy and programs, and been our partner for so much important work. From supporting Cooking up Change, our healthy cooking contest for CPS high school culinary students, to working with us to effectively recruit chefs for First Lady Obama’s Chefs Move to Schools program, to sharing tools and curricula with teachers through our Fit to Learn training program, Purple Asparagus and Melissa have always been great partners.

Melissa is moving on to new challenges and adventures and we wish her well and thank her for sharing this incredible resource with our national audience of educators. We look forward to sharing Delicious Nutritious Adventures and we also wish Melissa and her team our best on their next endeavors.