Founded in 2006, Edible Schoolyard New Orleans (ESYNOLA) changes the way children eat, learn, and live at five FirstLine public charter schools in New Orleans. Our aim is to improve the long-term well being of our students, families, and school community, by integrating hands-on organic gardening and seasonal cooking into the school curriculum, culture, and cafeteria programs. We work to create a strong and vibrant school community where students are engaged in experiential learning through hands-on kitchen and garden classes and special events, and where students are provided with healthy, nutritious meals and snacks through school-based meal programs in an inviting and sustainable cafeteria setting.
ESYNOLA involves students and the school community in growing, harvesting, preparing and enjoying food together as a means of awakening their senses, cultivating an environment that promotes a sense of pride and responsibility for our land and natural resources, and developing a love of fresh, seasonal foods. We help our children find a place at the table, and in the world, by nourishing their minds and bodies, building community through our programming, and creating a beautiful environment that stimulates students' curiosity and desire to learn about the natural world. As part of this vision, the whole school community – students, families, teachers, and neighbors – is able to participate in the growing, harvesting and sharing of food together as a means of building community and improving the health and well-being of all those we serve.
ESYNOLA is a signature program of FirstLine Schools, a network of five public, open-enrollment charter schools in New Orleans.