‘Hortaliza Escolar’ (School Gardens) is a project of the bilingual Rotary Club of Jaltemba Bay, Nayarit State, Mexico. All lessons and programs are in Spanish.
We are located on the Pacific coast, 60 miles north of Puerto Vallarta. There are currently three schools here with garden programs. Our current focus is on developing one primary school (La Colmena) into a working demonstration project that can be used as an example for other schools in the region.
Our Mission is to be a catalyst assisting schools to build and maintain programs where hands-on gardening and food education are an integral part of the curriculum, improving the health and wellness of students, families and the community.
The project area encompasses six communities Los Ayala, Guayabitos, La Peñita, Chacala, with a total population of about 15,000 people. There are about 12 Primary and 3 Secondary Schools in the area. However, it is difficult to find schools that promote or generate this type of learning. And the need is great because children are exposed to poverty, violence, drugs and the growing necessity to emigrate.
Our program values are: Collaboration, Community Building, Eco-Responsibility and Integrity.
Our program is designed to fit within the pedagogy of the mandated Mexican curriculum (SEP) and to expand upon it.
We have a stable corps of Rotary volunteers, school staff, parents, and community volunteers. We have a reliable funding stream through Rotary and local donations, and would like to improve our program and systems for evaluating our work.