Project Grow Planting the Seeds to Better Health

Read our article in the Cayman Financial Review Magazine, eversion 

Project Grow was developed to help children learn the principles of gardening. The hands-on experience helps familiarize children with the many relationships and cycles within nature providing a link to healthy eating and nutritional choices.

The gardening experience itself brings other health benefits like exercise, time spent outdoors in the fresh air and a sense of well being. It also offers new and exciting ways to address nutrition.

“Project Grow is an initiative of Generali Worldwide which commenced in 2009 planting vegetable gardens in our local schools with the involvement of students who have sustained their gardens over the past two to three years,” states Marilyn Whittaker, Marketing Manager for Generali Worldwide.

“Health and wellness for the community has always been a focus for Generali Worldwide and we are really pleased to partner with HSBC Cayman and Vigoro Nursery in this unique and important project.”

Tom Balon of Vigoro Nursery says, “It is very exciting to see projects of this nature materialize. There can be so many benefits from them. Awareness of health and lifestyle is always important, and gardening, especially edibles can be very rewarding in all aspects of well-being. We are very excited at Vigoro Nursery and are pleased to be a part of this ‘out of the box’ project.”

“Agriculture is an important part of the Cayman Islands and Project Grow uses an “out of the box” approach to engage children so that they can understand the direct relationship between the food on their plate and the impact on the environment,” said Jennifer O’Leary, Marketing Manager at HSBC Cayman.

“The importance of preserving the health of our youth is critical and this project aims to help shift a mindset to a healthier overall lifestyle.”

Project Grow held its first open call in May 2011 inviting all local schools to apply. Following the application process Project Grow welcomed the first twelve schools to the program. Grow Boxes, soil and other needed equipment along with a tailored approach to a sustainable garden plan were provided to each school followed by an initial “Plant Day” where student and teachers were invited to plant their first seeds with the help of Generali Worldwide, HSBC Cayman and Vigoro Nursery representatives.

The remaining schools have planned “Plant Days” in the coming months as Project Grow begins its second open call to all schools.

Applications and further information is available by emailing[email protected].