Fresh Food Connect Operator Spotlight: Healthy Day Partners

published on 14 February 2022

In our journey to expand throughout the nation, we are excited to highlight our partnership with Healthy Day Partners. Through our shared mission to support food justice and belief that everyone deserves a healthy day, we were able to partner with their Homegrown Hunger Relief Program in December, 2020. In the first year of operation, 50 gardeners signed up using the Fresh Food Connect app and donated over 4,800 pounds of produce to their local food banks and food pantries. Read below to find out a bit more about Healthy Day Partners. 

Everyone deserves a Healthy Day!

Who is Healthy Day Partners?

Healthy Day Partners is a non-profit organization in Southern California dedicated to the nourishment and healing of people and the planet through healthier and more just food systems, ecological practices, and environmental education. 

What is Healthy Day Partners’ Vision?

Healthy Day’s vision is to improve school lunches across the nation by creating and elevating school farm and garden programs where students have an opportunity to grow organic fruits and vegetables for the cafeteria, and to connect general education directly to the school lunch program, to student health and the health of the planet. They also create programs to empower food insecure children, seniors, active military, and veterans to grow their own healthy food, and help low-income neighborhoods increase access to healthy food for all - and grow healthier communities. 

Healthy Day Partners’ Programs and Partnerships

Homegrown Hunger Relief Program 

  • The Homegrown Hunger Relief Program connects their community and backyard gardeners in Encinitas, Carlsbad, Solana Beach and Balboa Park to local food pantries in their community. To donate your garden produce, download the Fresh Food Connect app. Click here for more information on when and how to donate. 
Excess garden produce is donated to HOMEGROWN HUNGER RELIEF every Sunday in the San Diego Botanic Garden parking lot.
Excess garden produce is donated to HOMEGROWN HUNGER RELIEF every Sunday in the San Diego Botanic Garden parking lot.

Healthy Communities Fruit Tree Program

  • The Communities Fruit Tree Program is a collaborative effort between Healthy Day Partners and San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E). Together, they provide high quality fruit trees, financial support, expertise, and oversight on planting and sustaining fruit trees in highly accessible locations throughout San Diego. To learn more about this program, or if you're interested in becoming an applicant, click here

Grab & Grow Gardens™

  • Healthy Day Partners’ collaboration with Waterwise Gardener resulted in Grab & Grow Gardens. With a common goal of empowerment, food security, and community resilience, the Grab & Grow Gardens™ provide participants with a small selection of vegetable and/or herb seedlings along with planting and harvesting instructions in English and Spanish. To learn more or donate, click here

Straight 2 The Plate™

  • Healthy Day’s Straight 2 The Plate™ programs emphasize the importance of growing and sourcing food as close to our plates as possible to improve personal and environmental health. Programs provide kids with hands-on learning experiences on  educational farms or in school gardens on topics of the environment, nutrition, and healthy food choices. Straight 2 the Plate™ programs are collaborative in nature, bringing agriculturally-based community partners to school districts and municipalities to ensure access to a wide variety of freshly grown fruits and vegetables. To learn more or become a sponsor, click here. Information on purchasing a Straight 2 the Plate™ Farm Boxes can be found here

Healthy Day Partners in Action

“The Kids Menu” 

  • The Kids Menu is a documentary investigating the rise of childhood obesity in the United States. Identifying the root causes being lack of knowledge on what healthy foods are and how to prepare them, lack of affordable options, and role models demonstrating unhealthy eating behaviors. The documentary features Healthy Day Partners’ Ocean Knoll Farm In Encinitas as an innovative solution to empower children in making healthier food choices. If you’d like to watch this documentary, it is available free on multiple sites via the internet.  

Spotlight News Featuring Healthy Day Partners

  • To understand more about what goes on behind the scenes at the farms, the impact of Healthy Day Partners, and learn more about their organization, click here

Bonus resources and information on the Healthy Day Partners Website

Do you live in Hardiness zone 10? Are you unsure of when to plant, sow, and harvest your vegetables? This link will take you to their Zone 10 Organic Gardening: planting chart. 

Are you interested in volunteering with Healthy Day Partners?  Click here to sign up!

We hope you have enjoyed this spotlight blog on Healthy Day Partners and found it informative.  If you’re a gardener, located in Encinitas, Carlsbad, Solana Beach and Balboa Park area, and interested in participating in the Homegrown Hunger Relief Program, download our Fresh Food Connect app to SHARE YOUR BOUNTY!

What if every gardener planted just one extra plant to share?

One small donation can have a tremendous impact. Just imagine, if every gardener planted one extra plant to share, collectively, we would have an abundant source of fresh, healthy produce available to be distributed to families experiencing food insecurity in our own communities! The free Fresh Food Connect mobile app connects you to a local hunger relief program, then manages and tracks your donations of homegrown produce throughout the season.  Download the app today!

Read more