Named the 2023 Texas Prevention Organization of the Year by Texas Health and Human Services!
We are excited beyond words, and our incredible staff deserves the recognition for delivering top-notch programs and services, but . . . we refuse to take credit, because at the end of the day, we’re all out there simply doing our jobs. Sometimes the work is emotionally overwhelming, but there is something that drives this team—the reason is you. You and your families are the reason we earned the award.
One of the prevention team’s original projects, which is being sustained by ongoing work from students and sponsors—is a Literacy Garden at Shackelford Elementary in Waxahachie. This project is well-supported by the community through organizations and businesses such as the Waxahachie Young Professionals, Dytek Electric, MINT Exteriors and The Greenery Landscape and Nursery.
Have a look:
Raised BedsPollinator GardenInteractive Play
Why are school gardens beneficial? According to our Director of Community Coalitions, Reanna Liversage, “The external learning environment creates an opportunity for students to learn beyond the classroom in a fun and engaging way. It allows students to soak up the sunshine, enjoy nature, engage all their senses, reduce stress, and experience room and space to move about while they are learning. It creates a unique learning environment for adaptive learning and adaptive behavior students by engaging their focus and giving them a sense of satisfaction by completing a task with their hands.”
Here are some activities the students are enjoying:
Bird FeedersMindfulnessGarden Stones
Given the success of this program, we've been asked to create literacy gardens at more schools. We'd love to, especially after reading this testimonial from Shackelford: