In the summer of 2023 the Cobourg Public Library hosted a weekly Junior Gardening Club for kids aged 6 to 12. Taking place in the library garden, kids got to learn about plants, how to care for them, and had the opportunity to visit with special guests from the community. The club aimed to help kids in town develop their apprecation for the land, the soil, and the plants that nourish us.
Many children commented that their favourite part of the program was tending to the garden and seeing the changes that took place with the plants. One family commented on how surprised they were that their child ate so much of the garden salad at the Friendship Garden Salad Party on the last day, because they are picky eaters at home. Another child was so proud of the garden salad that she took some of hers home to share with her mother.
A short questionnaire/quiz was given to the children to identify their knowledge of fruit and vegetable recognition and attitudes toward fruit and vegetable consumption. The children were asked questions at the first meeting of the Club and then asked the same questions at the last meeting of the Club. We found that 80% of the children’s ability to identify the foods improved. We also found that 70% of the children who tried the fruit and vegetables that they originally identified as not liking, actually changed their mind after they tasted the various fruit and vegetables that they grew in the Library garden.