Searching for a last minute gift? Give youth employment for the holidays!

Our first annual giving campaign, “Growing the Green” has soared in the last 2 weeks – we’re now over halfway to our tipping point goal. Please contribute and help us raise the last few thousand dollars we need to secure funding for several more youth positions in 2012!

In the event you still have gifts to buy for loved ones, please consider giving the gift of employment for a young person in New Orleans.

The idea for Grow Dat is simple: hire young adults, whose job options are often limited to fast food restaurants, to grow food for their community. In New Orleans we suffer from diet-related disease in numbers even higher than the staggering national averages. We believe in the ability of young adults not only to change those patterns in their own lives, but to be leaders who can affect change throughout their community. At Grow Dat, we give young people the skills to do just that.

During the holiday season you can help us grow the green giving the gift of employment for a young person here. We will provide you with a printable card recognizing your contribution that you can share with the person on whose behalf you have donated. All donations are tax deductible.

Devin bonds with a lovely hen on a visit to Green Gate Farms in Austin, Texas

We’re the featured campaign on Start Some Good!

Crowdsourcing Social Entrepreneurship: ‘Igniting ideas, Investment and Impact’

Grow Dat is excited to partner with the crowdsourcing platform Start Some Good for our first annual ‘Growing the Green’ Giving Campaign. Start Some Good helps launch social entrepreneurship projects that are committed to crafting  innovative solutions to ‘do good’ in the world.

Check out our featured profile on Start Some Good!

Calling all applicants: applications due this Friday, Dec. 16

Attention Applicants:
Applications and a letter of recommendation are due this Friday, December 16! 

Please put the finishing touches on your application, gather your letter of recommendation and submit both these documents to your school’s Grow Dat Liaison. (Not sure who your Liaison is? Contact

Applicants will be notified by Thursday, January 5, if they have been selected for an interview (all applicants will recieve a letter at school or phone call). Interviews will take place on our farm at City Park on Saturday, January 14.

Students are being recruited from our five 2012 PARTNER SCHOOLS:

  •  New Orleans Charter Science and Mathematics High School (SciHigh)
  • De La Salle High School
  • Warren Easton High School
  • The Net Charter School
  • Joseph Clark Charter High School

Want to apply but have more questions?
If you’re a young person in New Orleans who is interested in applying to join our 2012 Grow Dat Team, click here for detailed information on how to apply.

We look forward to reading all the applications and meeting our next crew of inspiring young leaders soon!

Our Impact 2011

Measuring Our Impact 

As 2011 draws to a close and we rapidly move into our hiring cycle for Grow Dat 2012, it’s important to pause and reflect on our first year.  Jolissa, Teedy, Muffin, Pink, Bri and Jabari rep our successes in this sweet evaluation infographic.

Infographic designed by Justin Park of the Tulane School of Architecture

Why provide employment for young people?
Check out the purple fact: 20% of all food and beverage workers are 16 to 19 years old. That’s 6 times the proportion for all other workers. This is the national average, but some researchers suspect that this number is even higher in New Orleans.

Grow Dat and the Agricultural Revolution: changing the tide of farming in the USA

Farming in the USA: Then (1930) and Now (2010)

Infographic designed by Allison Powell of the Tulane School of Architecture

At Grow Dat, we work to change the tide of industrial agriculture by promoting small-scale diversified farms, increasing access to food grown locally, and providing quality employment for young people in agriculture and food system work.

Introducing Our Curriculum – Cultivating Tomorrow’s Leaders: Foundations for Meaningful Change

‘I’ve learned new things. How to cook. We do speeches. We also went canoeing. We do a lot of activities where we learn about each other, get to know each other, get closer… They won’t make us do anything that we don’t want to do. But they will push us to our limits and get us to try and explore new things.’  – Grow Dat Crew Member, age 16

During our pilot program  last year, Grow Dat received a grant from The New Orleans Food and Farm Network (NOFFN) to develop and share our educational curriculum. We’re happy to announce that some of these lessons are now online and free for anyone to use!

Cultivating Tomorrow’s Leaders: Foundations for Meaningful Change

About Our Curriculum:
Our educational outcomes or goals are captured in four key pillars (see below). These pillars help guide all of our decisions about what-to-include in our curriculum. Ideally, lessons are not myopic and exclusive to one pillar, but rather overlap or connect with other pillars to make a truly integrated curriculum.

The Four Pillars of our Curriculum:

Pillar 1: Youth Leadership Development
Pillar 2: Agricultural Skills
Pillar 3: Wellness
Pillar 4: Food Justice & Food Systems
Pillars adapted from Urban Roots

We hope that these resources will assist many others doing food justice and farming education in New Orleans, the USA, and beyond!

A Grow Dat Cooking Class at the Whole Foods Demo Kitchen