Who We Are
The Self Esteem Project is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, mission-driven organization that uses a unique educational curriculum and implementation approach that integrates animation show content, experiential learning with kids, and rigorous evaluation of the experience to help advance and promote healthy eating, active living, and food and nutrition security for all.
Nearly 1-in-5 kids between the ages of 6-19 in the U.S. are obese
Healthy eating, adequate physical activity, and limiting sedentary time are all strongly related to children's physical, mental, and emotional well being. Unfortunately, children living with obesity have grown substantially in recent decades, and that extra weight places kids at risk for serious health concerns. It can also take an emotional toll, contributing to low self-esteem, negative body image, anxiety, and depression.
Our first project
Healthy Kids, Healthy Families, Healthy Communities, Healthy Society.
That's the foundation of our first project—we like to dream BIG!—and we have confidence we can achieve these impacts. Our strategy includes strong partners and partnerships, with organizations that serve children, particularly those in greatest needs and at greatest risk, and facilitates content and implementation in a way that is feasible and effective.
Program activities include school garden planning and builds, animation content backed with age-appropriate, purposeful, and targeted curricular materials (e.g., social emotional learning, nutrition and health, and gardening), and experiential learning extensions such as recipe testing, games, and tastings! Each module features a unique animation episode and then a series of session components that support the learning targets in bitesize chunks that are fun for kids and easy for staff or teachers to implement.
K-6 School Partners that have participated in the Grady's Garden educational Program
Sibley Elementary School, Grand Rapids, MI
Stocking Elementary School, Grand Rapids, MI
Coit Elementary School, Grand Rapids, MI
Boys & Girls Club Program Partners that have participated in the Grady's Garden educational Program
Paul I. Phillips Club, Grand Rapids, MI
Seidman Club, Grand Rapids, MI
Steil, Club, Grand Rapids, MI
Kent School Services Network, Grand Rapids, MI
Support the Self Esteem Project
Join us through these incredible opportunities:
$150 Supplies materials for one classroom of elementary students to experience Grady's Garden for the first time.
$300 Provides gardening supplies for a school or community-based garden.
$500 Supports the implementation of the Grady's Garden curriculum in a school or community setting led by the Self Esteem Project team.
$1,000 Empowers the creation of a school or community garden in an under-resourced neighborhood, providing learning opportunities and fresh fruits and vegetables to a community!
$5,000 This major investment will allow SEP to develop a training manual and virtual training sessions to allow teachers and youth development professionals to implement the Grady's Garden curriculum in additional communities.
$10,000 Is an opportunity to underwrite the expansion of the Grady's Garden programming to a new community. Contact us to discuss communities that you may be able to underwrite!
OUR PROGRAM APPROACH
Introducing Grady's Garden! Six kids decide to create a garden to grow vegetables for their community and families.
Watch the "Let's Plant a Salad Trailer" and the "Great Tomato Race" Trailer
We have reached hundreds of kids at schools and Boys and Girls Clubs so far, with great expansion planned through the end of 2022 and forthcoming in 2023. We have observed significant increases in children's ability to identify vegetable features as well as their willingness to try new vegetables, which are positive indicators for future healthy eating behaviors. Additional and in depth impact evaluation reports are forthcoming, including measures of self-esteem and fruit and vegetable intake among children.
Please contact us if you are interested in volunteering or in donating to support our cause, publishing Grady's Garden episodes, research collaboration opportunities, or to learn more about our model to find solutions TO IMPROVE SELF-EFFICACY AND HEALTH & WELLNESS FOR CHILDREN! Please contact us if you are interested in volunteering or in donating to support our cause, publishing Grady's Garden episodes, research collaboration opportunities, or to learn more about our model to find solutions TO IMPROVE SELF-EFFICACY AND HEALTH & WELLNESS FOR CHILDREN!
If you have any questions, you can also contact us by address: 111 Division Avenue South, Grand Rapids, MI 49503