From The Ground Up school visit
From the Ground Up Yukon Healthy Choice Fundraiser

From the Ground Up

From the Ground Up connects Yukon farms to Yukon tables.

Students and daycares sell boxes of delicious Yukon vegetables throughout their communities with this healthy choice fundraiser.

From the Ground Up is built on a healthy choice fundraiser model but it is more than a fundraiser. It connects farm to table, supports healthy nutrition environments and builds community.

Since 2012:

  • more than 490,000 pounds of fresh Yukon vegetables have been put on Yukon plates; 
  • 3297 boxes have been donated to local organizations and people who need them most; and
  • over $368,600 has been raised for Yukon schools and daycares.

It’s local, it's healthy and it's profitable. Yukoners love it!

If you have any questions about this fundraiser, email health.promotion@gov.yk.ca or phone 867-456-6160 or toll free 1-800-661-0408 ext. 6160.

From the Ground Up – More than a fundraiser

From the Ground Up is a healthy choice fundraiser where students sell boxes of fresh Yukon grown vegetables.

About From the Ground Up

In 2012 we piloted From the Ground Up in 2 schools with the following goals.

  1. Promote healthy nutrition environments and encourage Yukoners to eat more vegetables.
  2. Connect Yukon farms to Yukon tables.

Since 2012 it has grown from 2 to 21 schools.  In 2016, daycares also joined, this year we have 5 daycares participating.

We’ve literally grown every year!

This fundraiser:

  • runs each September to October throughout Yukon communities;
  • connects schools and daycares with local farmers to sell boxes of fresh and delicious vegetables;
  • proves that it is possible to have a profitable healthy choice fundraiser; and
  • supports Yukon farmers.

From the Ground Up offers the opportunity to:

  • raise money for schools and daycares that receive 40% of the profits;
  • promote healthy eating to students, parents, teachers, daycares and the community;
  • help out our community by purchasing a vegetable box for donation;
  • help everyone feel good about supporting fundraising events, such as field trips and graduations; and
  • provide access to recipes and veggie tips.

Another highlight is that, if they can, each participating farm hosts a class of students. This class gets to experience hands on where their food comes from. They also get to clean and package produce for the fundraiser.

Fundraising during COVID-19

2020 has been a challenging year. We are grateful to kick off From The Ground Up again this year, but with a few key changes. Here's what's important to know:

  • ​Please see our tips on how to fundraise safely during COVID-19.​ 
  • What you receive in your box may look a bit different.
    • Still 20 pounds of local veggies, but given the weather conditions, the vegetable varieties will depend on what we have available this year.
  • We ask for patience with the box pick-up process. Details will depend on each school's plan.
  • Please direct questions to health.promotion@gov.yk.ca​.

How the fundraiser works

5 simple steps

Step 1: Sign up

In May, all Yukon schools and licensed daycares receive an invitation to sign up for From the Ground Up. A list of participating schools and daycares is available.

We have a list of other healthy fundraising ideas if you’re a teacher and your school is not participating.

Step 2: Choose a coordinator

Participating schools and daycares decide who will be their From the Ground Up coordinator. This coordinator will lead the fundraiser and take part in 2 meetings: 

  • 1 in June to begin preparing for their fundraiser; and
  • 1 at the end of August to receive everything they need to run a successful program.

Step 3: Begin fundraising!

Participating schools and daycares start fundraising. Students visit their neighbourhood to sell boxes door-to-door. Schools and daycares also take orders by phone.

If you need more copies of the order form or the customer information sheet, print the following 2020 versions:

Step 4: Submit order forms

  • The coordinator tallies up the orders.
  • The coordinator then emails the orders to the program tina.busetto@gov.yk.ca or fax them to 867-456-6502.

Step 5: Delivery day!

For the delivery days, see the schedule for your school or daycare. This is when everyone who’s ordered a box will come to pick it up.  

Participating school and daycare pick up dates

Whitehorse schools

Christ the King Elementary – 20 Nisutlin Drive, Riverdale – 867-667-3527 (October 8 pick up)

Elijah Smith Elementary – 1399 Hamilton Boulevard, Granger – 867-667-5992 (October 20 pick up)

F.H. Collins – 1001 Lewes Boulevard, Riverdale – 867-667-8665 (October 6 pick up)

Golden Horn Elementary – Duncan Drive Lot 209, Golden Horn – 867-667-8130 (October 22 pick up)

Grey Mountain Primary – 186 Alsek Road, Riverdale – 867-667-5189 (October 13 pick up)

Hidden Valley Elementary – 5 MacPherson Drive, Hidden Valley – 867-667-8164 (October 14 pick up)

Holy Family Elementary – 55 Wann Road, Porter Creek – 867-667-3500 (October 7 pick up)

Individual Learning Centre – Suite 500 4201-4th Avenue, Downtown – 867-667-8288 (October 13 pick up)

Jack Hulland Elementary – 1304 Fir Street, Porter Creek – 867-667-8496 (October 5 pick up)

Porter Creek – 1405 Hickory Street, Porter Creek – 867-667-8044 (October 7 pick up)

Selkirk Elementary – 5 Selkirk Street, Riverdale – 867-667-3688 (October 6 pick up)

Takhini Elementary – 526 Range Road, Takhini – 867-667-3625 (October 21 pick up)

Vanier – 16 Duke Road, Riverdale – 867-667-5901 (October 19 pick up)

Whitehorse Elementary – 4181 4th Avenue, Downtown – 867-667-8083 (October 15 pick up)

Rural schools

Chief Zzeh Gittlit School – Old Crow – 867-996-3151 (October 6 pick up)

Johnson Elementary School – Watson Lake – 867-536-7333 (October 15 pick up)

Khàtìnas.àxh Community School – Teslin – 867-390-2570 (October 14 pick up)

Robert Service School – Dawson City – 867-993-5435 (October 1 pick up)

Ross River School – Ross River – 867-969-2216 (October 20 pick up)

St. Elias Community School – Haines Junction – 867-634-2231 (October 21 pick up)

Daycares

Downtown Days Childcare Centre – 478 Range Road – 867-667-6776 (October 26 pick up)

Fireflies Daycare – Unit E, 2157 2nd Avenue – 867-336-1505 (October 26 pick up)

Garderie du petit cheval blanc – 22 Falcon Drive – 867-633-6566 (October 26 pick up)

Montessori Borealis Preschool – 102-1191 Front Street – 647-385-7350 (October 26 pick up)

Rural daycares

Little Blue Learning Centre – Dawson City – 867-993-5167 (October 1 pick up)

 

  • Kids will be selling veggies from September 3 to September 30
  • All pick up times will be from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.
  • This year we ask you to pick up your boxes directly from your day care

Our farmers

This year, we have 2 farms partnering in From the Ground Up! Yukon Grain Farm provides veggies for Whitehorse schools and participating rural schools. Vogt Enterprises provides veggies for Robert Service School in Dawson City.

Yukon Grain Farm

Yukon Grain Farm is about 25 minutes north of Whitehorse, off the North Klondike Highway. It’s owned and operated by Steve and Bonnie MacKenzie-Grieve.

Bonnie and Steve came to Yukon for the first time in 1994 for a holiday and fell in love with it. They purchased their farm in 1999. For the next 4 years they travelled from southern Alberta to Yukon for the summer growing seasons. They moved here permanently in 2004.

In the beginning, they started producing grain. Next they planted a test plot of potatoes and it thrived. One day Steve made inquiries at the local food store about providing local potatoes. The potato market quickly became a success. So they decided to try carrots which became another success.  Things evolved from there!

"The cooler Yukon temperatures are great for cool weather crops," Steve says.

Today, Yukon Grain Farm cultivates about 300 acres. They produce a variety of crops including:

  • grain;
  • barley;
  • oats;
  • wheat;
  • potatoes;
  • carrots;
  • beets;
  • cabbages; and
  • parsnips.

They continue to test out other root vegetables.

The Yukon Grain Farm does a lot of hand weeding to avoid using too many chemicals. The farm is not totally chemical free but uses a fraction of what a producer would use in warmer climates.

As Steve says, “I don't like eating any more chemicals than anybody else.”

The Canada Good Agricultural Practices (CanGAP) program certified the MacKenzie-Grieves in 2012. This is a food safety certification that monitors:

  • the production;
  • packing; and
  • storing of their vegetables.

Steve adds, "The best thing about being a farmer is that you are working on your own place on your own time. Being able to work in your own back yard and being able to produce something that people enjoy is very rewarding."

Steve and Bonnie were Yukon Farmers of the Year in 2012. They have been with From the Ground Up Yukon since it began in 2012. They have been instrumental in the success of the program. 

Yukon Grain Farm
Yukon Grain Farm

Vogt Enterprises

30 years ago Lucy and Jack Vogt left Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, and came north looking for work. They found it in Dawson City.

Every year, during the short growing season, the Vogts make the Saturday drive into Dawson to sell their vegetables and bedding plants at the Dawson City Farmers’ Market.

It’s hard to imagine that just beyond the barren tailings piles lining the Klondike Highway is the Vogts' fertile 10-acre plot at Henderson's Corner along the Klondike River. There the Vogts worked the land, started a business and raised their 4 children. They were named the Yukon Farmers of the Year in 2011.

Lucy is the conductor of the operation, attending to the gardens and 3 greenhouses, and Jack deals with the mechanics of the farm. They produce potatoes, carrots, beets, turnips, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, peas, lettuce, spinach, radishes, tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini and bedding plants without the use of any herbicides or pesticides.

"We both grew up on farms. Growing things has always been part of our lives, so when we moved to Yukon, it was only natural that we would plant our own garden," says Lucy.

When the Vogts came to Dawson, Jack worked in construction while Lucy stayed home. One year she had more vegetables than she was going to make use of and decided to sell them. Realizing it could be an extra source of income, she planted more. The Dawson City Farmers’ Market provided a venue, and it developed from there.

"It was something I could do at home and that the kids could help me with," she says.

The Vogts adapted to growing food in a northern climate. Lucy explains it is the short growing season and the long days and cool nights that give the vegetables the vibrancy and taste that is uniquely Yukon.

The Vogts have noticed many changes over their 25 years of selling vegetables, one being an increase in frost-free days in the summer. Another is local food consciousness. "The idea of buying local has grown phenomenally over the last few years,” Lucy says. “More and more people are learning it's important to know where their food comes from and they want to buy from their local farmer."

Attending to the land is a full-time commitment. To the Vogts, however, the benefit of growing your own food and making it available to others is invaluable.

Vogt Enterprises
Vogt Enterprises

Recipes

Do you want new ideas for cooking beets, cabbage, carrots and potatoes?

Check out the From the Ground Up cookbook for great recipes using your veggies. You can also get kids in the kitchen this way. Then they are more likely to:

  • eat vegetables;
  • like vegetables; and
  • try new foods when they can make it themselves!
From The Ground Up cookbook
From the Ground Up

Veggie tips

Beets

Beet storage tips

Store beets in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 weeks in a plastic bag or a covered container.

Did you know?

You can eat the green tops of beets too! Use raw beet greens for salads or add raw beet greens to sandwiches and wraps.

Cabbage

Cabbage storage tips

You can store cabbage in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 weeks in a plastic bag or a covered container. Once you’ve cut it, use cabbage within 2 to 3 days. Freeze fresh or cooked cabbage in airtight containers or freezer bags for up to 10 months.

Did you know?

To shred cabbage, cut the head into 4 quarters and cut out the hard stalk in the middle. Cut each quarter into fine shreds.

Carrots

Carrot storage tips

Store carrots in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. Remove the leafy green carrot tops before storing. Leaving the greens will take moisture out of the carrots and make them tough and wilted.

Did you know?

Baby carrots are full-grown carrots that have been peeled and shaped into smaller pieces by a machine. Because they no longer have the skin, they have less fibre than regular sized carrots.

Potatoes

Potato storage tips

Store potatoes in a cool, dark place. They will last up to 2 to 3 months. Make sure air can circulate around the potatoes. Do not store in a tight plastic bag.

Did you know?

Potatoes turn green when they’re exposed to light. Trim away any green area before cooking.

From The Ground Up veggit tips photo
Government of Yukon

For parents

Parents play an important role in shaping their children’s eating habits. You teach children about nutrition. Teach them why a healthy diet is important and it will help them have healthy eating habits for life. Everyone knows that eating vegetables is good for you. Yet, lots of us struggle when it comes to getting them on our plates.

Have a picky eater?

All young children are more-or-less picky about food. It’s important to know they warm up slowly to unfamiliar foods and may have to watch you eat, touch or taste a food. They put it in their mouths and take it out again 15 or 20 times (or even more) before they learn to like it.

Getting kids to eat more veggies

It can be hard to get your kids to eat vegetables and fruit. You’re not alone! Many children don’t get the amount of vegetables and fruit recommended. There are a few easy tips to get your children to enjoy their vegetables and fruit and meet their needs.

Choosing healthy portions

Choosing healthy portions of food can help you reach and stay at a healthy weight. Many people choose portions that are larger than the recommended serving sizes suggested. When this happens too often, your daily intake of calories is too high.

Division of responsibility in feeding

Children develop eating competence step-by-step throughout the growing-up years. This happens when they are fed according to the tasks appropriate for their age.

For schools

Besides being a great fundraiser for your school, From the Ground Up also provides many teaching opportunities. While students are selling and talking about fresh, local veggies to family and friends, why not also educate them about:

Classroom resources

From the Ground Up has come up with some great classroom resources. They introduce wonderful ideas that incorporate the fundraiser with learning activities.

  • From the Ground Up in the Classroom Resource includes lesson plans for kindergarten to Grade 6. They are fun, interactive, and easy to adapt. They focus on the importance of healthy food choices and on eating more vegetables. Each lesson is linked to a Healthy Living Prescribed Learning Outcomes for each grade.
  • Nutrition bites with healthy eating messages for school newsletters.
  • Veggie jokes that you can use for announcements during your From the Ground Up campaign.

Other ideas for healthy choice fundraisers

Schools can show their commitment to healthy living with a healthy choice fundraiser. Healthy fundraising activities send positive health messages. They can also reinforce nutrition lessons taught at home and in the classroom. They show a school’s commitment to healthy behaviour among students, parents and the community.

Get more ideas and information about healthy choice school fundraisers:

For daycares

Daycares play an important role in shaping and supporting a healthy nutrition environment for children. The first 5 years of a child’s life are critical years for healthy development. They can lay the groundwork of healthy eating habits for life.

In daycare, children get to practise healthy eating, just like they do at home. Read on for resources on how to support a healthy nutrition environment at your daycare.

Healthy beginnings

The Healthy Eating and Sugar Sweetened Beverages manual is an at-your-fingertips resource for early childhood practitioners. Use the games, guidelines, recipes, tips and tools for an active, healthy environment in your daycare.

Healthy snacks

Healthy snacks are as important to a child’s growth and development as healthy meals. Young children have small stomachs and cannot get all the nutrients they need from just 3 regular meals. Older children need snacks to stay alert and energetic throughout the day.

Sample lunch menus

Need some ideas to feed a preschooler? Use these sample meal plans and tips on healthy eating to help you feed a little one.

Besides being a great fundraiser for your daycare, From the Ground Up also provides many teaching opportunities. Why not take this opportunity to talk about healthy food choices, Canada’s Food Guide, eating more veggies and local farming.

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