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Waco, Texas


World Hunger Relief, Inc. established 1976.

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Waco, Texas


World Hunger Relief, Inc. established 1976.

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Farm Tours


Interactive tours tailored to your group's developmental levels and interests.

Farm Tours


Interactive tours tailored to your group's developmental levels and interests.

schedule a tour


For younger students: investigative Learning

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PLANTS & SEEDS

  • Identifying plants, stages of growth, and the needs of plants.
  • Comparing different seeds.
  • Discussing vegetables and food production.
  • Picking and tasting vegetables from the garden.

ANIMALS

  • Discussing and observing characteristics of goats, cows, rabbits, chickens, and worms.
  • Feeling the fur of different animals.

FOOD FROM ANIMALS & PLANTS

  • Discussing milk production from goats and observe a goat being milked when possible.
  • Picking and tasting vegetables from the garden.
  • Discussing and smelling various herbs.

for older students: exploratory learning

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ANIMALS & PLANTS

  • Discussing and observing characteristics, physiology, and function of farm animals.
  • Exploring relatedness and interdependence of animals on the farm.
  • Observing a goat being milked when possible.

SYSTEMS & CYCLES

  • Identifying stages of plant and animal growth and needs of the earth in maintaining those systems.
  • Comparing ecosystems and environmental conservation solutions such as composting.
  • Discussing cycles of growth, geological formation, weather and climate.

FOOD & HUNGER ISSUES

  • Explore issues of nutrition and health as they relate to food production and access.
  • Discuss implications of agriculture, food, and relevant issues of social and economic justice.
  • Discuss the difference between relief efforts and development work.

WHRI has tours tailored to meet the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) requirements for grades 1-6. We can customize farm visits to fit the curriculum, TEKS requirements, or learning objectives of any grade. Please consult the WHRI staff to plan your farm experience; this can include service projects, meaningful work experiences, and pre/post-visit interactions.

To get a better idea of what our school tours involve please visit Education Resources and download the grade appropriate tour curriculum. You will also be able to find links to additional educational resources that can help you and your students further explore gardens, food, compost, and much more!


community education tours

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Geared towards families, civic organizations and faith communities, these tours include information on the following topics:

  • Agriculture and the environment.
  • Lifestyles and their impact on the environment.
  • Life in developing countries.
  • Working models of principles taught in school science classes.
  • Nutrition.
  • Gardening, with an emphasis on organic and sustainable food production.
  • Composting and conservation of resources.
  • Rabbits, goats, and chickens.
  • Poverty and hunger.
  • Relief and development efforts.
  • Stewardship.

All our tours can be geared toward a particular topic of focus that interests your group and would make your visit to WHRI more valuable. Please don't hesitate to ask about any topic that interests you.

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School Gardening


Developing healthy, sustainable communities through the education and exploration of healthy, sustainable food systems.

School Gardening


Developing healthy, sustainable communities through the education and exploration of healthy, sustainable food systems.

 

mission & vision

The mission of the School Gardening Program at WHRI is to partner with local organizations in developing healthy, sustainable communities through the education and exploration of healthy, sustainable food systems. We also support the Heart of Texas Urban Gardening Coalition (HOT UGC) in many community wide initiatives.

Our vision for the School Gardening Program is to focus on our school gardens as a hub that connects us to the surrounding neighborhoods and broader Waco community. By focusing on our school gardens, we hope to expand the school gardening program to include more aspects of community development in the neighborhoods surrounding our pilot school(s).

partner schools

World Hunger Relief, Inc. has school gardening programs at J.H. Hines Elementary and Indian Springs Middle School. Through these programs, students discover how to grow and take care of both ornamental plants and food crops. These programs get the students involved in the garden with hands-on activities such as planting seeds, transplanting seedlings, watering plants, pulling weeds, harvesting vegetables, and composting yard waste. Students see science in action and learn life science essentials such as the needs of plants, the parts of a plant, and the process of photosynthesis. Gardening emphasizes many of the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) objectives across subject areas, and helps students improve health & diet habits, develop communication skills, understand food system issues, and practice good citizenship.


We partner closely with the Heart of Texas Urban Gardening Coalition in providing these gardening clubs. We receive financial support from the Baptist General Convention of Texas’ Christian Life Commission, Cooper Foundation, Darden Foundation, Walmart Foundation, and Whole Kids Foundation. We are also a Waco ISD Partner in Education through their Adopt A School program.

 
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Service Learning


Living On The Other Side: a global poverty service learning program for youth and adults, educating participants and inspiring active responses to issues of global hunger and poverty.

Service Learning


Living On The Other Side: a global poverty service learning program for youth and adults, educating participants and inspiring active responses to issues of global hunger and poverty.

 

An estimated 1.02 billion people in the world go hungry. Each year, 3 million under-five children die because they are undernourished.

World Bank Group, 2008


 

There is enough food in the world to feed everyone, so why are people hungry?

This is an example of the type of probing question asked as a part of the Service Learning experience. Our enthusiastic staff is committed to educating participants about the causes and issues related to global hunger. These intersecting topics include poverty, issues affecting women and children, access to clean water, rural living, forced labor, global hunger awareness, and the impact of our lifestyle choices on our global neighbors.

More than just sitting and listening, participants learn through games, videos, skits, and engaging educational activities. They will also participate in the daily labor faced by struggling families in order to better understand what life is like for the millions of hungry people around the world. The format of the Service Learning program is designed for either an 8-hour experience, or a more comprehensive 24-hour overnight experience. Both programs can be modified to fit your group’s area of interest within the goals and objectives of the program.

This experiential program is ideal for:

  • Church youth groups
  • Adult church groups
  • Groups involved in short/long term mission trips
  • Youth clubs
  • Civic and community organizations
  • College clubs and organizations
  • Families

OTHER INFO

PROGRAM COST

8 hr. Experience $25/person

24 hr. Experience $50/person

Planning a multi-day or week-long trip? We can do that too. Groups may extend their experience for $15/person per day

BEFORE YOU COME

Skip at least one meal prior to your arrival. Food will be available to you throughout the weekend, but having skipped a meal is an important part of our opening activities. Bring one change of clothing (that can get dirty), sleeping bag, and hygiene items in one small backpack. No cell phones or electronic devices, please!

WANT MORE SPECIFICS?

For more details, sample schedules, and registration forms please download our 2013 LOTOS Packet.

sample activities

13 CENT BREAKFAST

Participants wrestle with the choices people in poverty are forced to make when buying food with limited resources.

WORLD MAP ACTIVITY

This activity visually and tangibly illustrates the distribution of population and resources around the world using our giant outdoor world map.

HUNGER MEAL

Participants engage the issue of hunger through an interactive meal that represents the meals eaten worldwide and the gap between rich and poor.

DINNER ON THE OTHER SIDE

Participants prepare and eat an entire meal simulating developing world conditions: harvesting vegetables, carrying water, harvesting wood for a fire, and slaughtering a chicken if they choose to eat meat.


To register or discuss, please contact localeducation@worldhungerrelief.org.

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Farm Camp


A summer camp for students entering Kindergarden up to 12 years old.

Farm Camp


A summer camp for students entering Kindergarden up to 12 years old.

 

It’s time to sign up for camp at World Hunger Relief farm! Your children will enjoy a variety of content that includes hands on lessons, games, cooking, bugs and much more!

We invite your children to learn about food, how to grow, how animals help us, the importance of composting and much, much more! Through hands on lessons, songs, crafts, games, cooking and activities, campers will have a week jam packed with experiential learning.

We are offering two weeks of half-day Farm Camp for children ages 4 ½ to completion of 7th grade.

June 19-23 Farm Fresh Pizza Week (Full)
July 10-14 Creepy Crawlers and Bugs Week

To Register, click here.

We also have scholarships available based on needs and open spaces. Fill out this application for consideration.


 

farm camp faqs

CAN I VISIT WHRI BEFORE FARM CAMP?

Absolutely! Please call our office and speak to Rebecca Mann about scheduling a visit.

IS LUNCH SERVED?

Lunch is an additional $10. 

WHAT IF MY CHILD HAS A FOOD ALLERGY OR MEDICAL CONDITION?

There is a place on the registration form where you can indicate food allergies and medical conditions. This will be closely monitored by Farm Camp staff. Medications will be checked in daily at our registration table, and administered by trained staff or volunteer. All medication needs to be labeled clearly with each camper’s first and last name. Your camper’s medication will be stored in a clearly marked container specified for his/her camp group.

WHAT DOES A TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE?

Each day will consist of farm-related lessons, games, crafts, story-time, and activities. We will have planned breaks so the campers can rest.

WHAT IF THERE IS AN EMERGENCY?

In the case of an emergency, we will have access to parent’s phone numbers as well as the emergency contact parents provide on the registration form.

WHAT WILL YOU DO IN CASE OF INCLEMENT WEATHER?

Camp staff has planned indoor activities in the case of inclement weather. Each group will have an assigned indoor space/classroom where they will continue their exciting Farm Camp experience.

WHAT SHOULD MY CHILD BRING?

Campers should bring a small backpack with a water bottle, any medication they may need (medications will be turned in at the registration table daily), and sunscreen. All personal items should be clearly labeled with the camper’s name. All other supplies will be provided by WHRI.

WHAT IS APPROPRIATE DRESS?

All campers MUST wear closed toed shoes, cool clothing that you don’t mind getting dirty, and if possible a hat. 

WHEN IS FARM CAMP?

We have two weeks of Farm Camp this year! The themes will be different so your kids will love to attend both!

June 19-23 Farm Fresh Pizza Week

July 10-14 Creepy Crawlers and Bugs Week

WHAT ARE THE TIMES?

Monday through Friday, 8:00am to 12:00pm.

For an additional $10, your child can eat lunch on the farm and be picked up at 1:00pm.

HOW OLD DOES MY CHILD HAVE TO BE?

We will accept children 4 1/2 up to completion of 7th grade. Campers will be grouped according to the grade they are entering.

WHERE IS CAMP HELD?

World Hunger Relief, Inc.
356 Spring Lake Rd.
Waco, Texas 76705

HOW MUCH IS FARM CAMP?

Farm Camp is $140 ($150 with lunch). It includes a t-shirt, garden journal, and nutritious snacks.

WILL I GET MY FIRST CHOICE OF WEEKS?

Due to the limited space available for each week of camp, we cannot guarantee that you will receive your first choice. However, we will do everything we can to accommodate your requests.

WHAT IF I HAVE TO CANCEL OR CHANGE WEEKS?

If you cancel before June 1, you are eligible to receive a 50% refund. If it is after June 1, no refund will be offered. Week changes may be possible, dependent upon registration numbers.

WHAT IS FARM CAMP?

Farm Camp offers hands-on experiential learning about plants, animals and food. Campers will be trained in planting and tending a garden, caring for animals, and cooking nutritious food. They will be motivated to explore and learn more about the world around them through arts, crafts, games, and activities. Campers will be introduced to healthy nutritious snacks, and will learn more about where their food comes from.

WHO IS YOUR STAFF?

Our staff consists of our Service Learning Intern, Food Systems Interns, and local volunteers. The staff is supervised by Rebecca Mann, WHRI’s Business and Education Director.

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Veggie Van


The Veggie Van brings the good stuff to food deserts in our community. The Veggie Van is currently providing vegetables for a Fresh Produce Prescription (Rx) program in partnership with the Waco Family Health Center at the MLK, Main, and S. 18 Clinics. 

Veggie Van


The Veggie Van brings the good stuff to food deserts in our community. The Veggie Van is currently providing vegetables for a Fresh Produce Prescription (Rx) program in partnership with the Waco Family Health Center at the MLK, Main, and S. 18 Clinics. 

how it started

World Hunger Relief, Inc. launched the Veggie Van to address the needs of those living in food deserts in our community. A food desert is a geographic area where affordable and nutritious food is difficult to obtain, particularly for those without access to an automobile. Research links them to diet-related health problems.

The food desert issue has received a lot of attention in Waco. There have been a number of assessments and community input meetings conducted about this issue but there has not been much action taken. WHRI staff attended as many of these meetings as possible and after careful thought and planning we believe that we are positioned to act in a way that will take us a step toward a healthier Waco. 

WHRI is uniquely positioned to address the challenge of supplying healthy foods to those who live in food deserts in Waco. We have been involved in working toward the root issues of nutrition in our community for many years. Ten years ago WHRI completed an assessment of food issues in our area and determined from that assessment to pursue school gardening as a way to address a need expressed by the community and to develop relationships for future efforts at improving the nutrition of those in Waco.

WHRI is still working directly managing school gardens, we have handed over programs to other organizations, and have provided consulting on a number of other similar efforts. In these programs we have seen students eagerly trying new vegetables as they develop skills in gardening and food production. As students’ interest in healthy eating increased, we became more aware of these food deserts in our community. We encourage students to eat healthily but the environment in their neighborhoods and lack of access to fresh produce makes it difficult for their families to change their eating habits.

THE GOOD STUFF...TO GO!

The World Hunger Relief Veggie Van will allow us to sell vegetables for short periods of time when large crowds gather, i.e. at the end of the school day. This would allow us to keep our costs low, while providing vegetables in a way that is convenient to families. 

We also plan to accept SNAP (formerly known as food stamps) and plan on offering people who are eligible for SNAP a discount on produce. This will also allow people who can afford to pay full price access to healthy food while they help provide sustainable funding for the project.

Frequently, we have a surplus of certain vegetables due to the seasonality of growing vegetables. We have not always had an outlet for these vegetables and have not wanted to sell them at prices that undercut for-profit farmers at the Waco Downtown Farmers Market. We will be able to provide these vegetables at discounted rates for those using SNAP at the Veggie Van without concern that we are unfairly competing other farmers. We will also be able to provide a whole variety of vegetables for those willing and able to pay full price.

In the future, operating costs will be lower as the locations for selling vegetables will be determined, the design of a van will be complete, and marketing will be less of a an issue as word gets out. We also will be able to offset a significant portion of these costs by the sale of vegetables and other healthy foods.


demographic data

  • 57,983 people in Waco live in USDA declared Food Desert tracts, 46.5% of the total population.
  • In zip code 76704, 48.2% of people live below the poverty line average $16,673.
  • 98% of students at J.H. Hines Elementary School are on free and reduced price lunch.
  • Over half the households in 76704 have received SNAP benefits in the past 12 months.
  • 22% of the households in 76704 do not have a car.
  • 63% of people in McLennan county are obese or overweight.
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HOW TO GET INVOLVED


Support our work with the Veggie Van and beyond.

HOW TO GET INVOLVED


Support our work with the Veggie Van and beyond.

 

1. veggie video challenge

Make a video showcasing your favorite veggie recipes.

  1. Create a short video (up to 3 minutes) creatively explaining your favorite veggie-centric recipe.

  2. Post it to YouTube and share your video with WHRI. Use #veggietube and #wacofresh on social media, then email a link to veggietube@worldhungerrelief.org to make sure you're included in the challenge!

  3. Encourage your friends to give to your video using the new YouTube Donation Card feature. 

Read more about cards the new donation program and how to insert them into your video here. World Hunger Relief, Inc. is one of the first members in this program so you will be able to choose us from the list. As an added bonus during the beta phase, we don’t have to pay any credit card processing fees!

Videos will receive awards for most views, likes and dollars raised.

Prizes include:

  • Video of the week features on WHRI social media and right here on the website.

  • Veggie Video Film Fest at Farm Day on April 30th.

  • Inclusion of the recipe in the Veggie Van Cookbook.


2. Donate

Provide financial support to World Hunger Relief, Inc. and the Veggie Van.

Donate Now

3. Volunteer

We need your help! Whether in the garden, behind a computer, on the phone, or on the Veggie Van—just let us know where you want to share your talent and sweat.


4. Buy Vegetables

Our model will only work if it includes all types of people buying vegetables from the Veggie Van.


5. JOIN the VAN DRIVERS CLUB

24 Carrot Van Driver  |  $5000

Includes your name on a large Veggie Van sign, a Veggie Van pin, inclusion on the Van Drivers page of our website and annual report, and a spot holding the ribbon in the ribbon cutting ceremony.

14 Carrot Van Driver  |  $2500

Includes your name on a medium Veggie Van sign, a Veggie Van pin, inclusion on the Van Drivers page of our website and annual report, and a special invitation to the ribbon cutting.

10 Carrot Van Driver  |  $500

Includes your name on a list of Veggie Van sign, a Veggie Van Pin, inclusion on the Van Drivers page of our website and annual report, and a special invitation to the ribbon cutting.

become a van driver

6. host the veggie van

If you are interested in hosting the van at your church, organization or other location, please fill out the application below.

 

A special thanks to our Van Drivers Club, Cooper Foundation and Waco Foundation for supporting the launch of the Veggie Van.