San Diego, CA – The GROW Fund, a non-profit certification developed by Organics Unlimited in 2005, has partnered with Produce for Kids in their Power Your Lunchbox Pledge. This one-of-a-kind digital marketing program will take place from August 11 through September 15, inspiring more health conscious lifestyles.
The Power Your Lunchbox Pledge encourages families throughout the U.S. to take a pledge to pack healthier lunches for their children utilizing GROW bananas as one of the participating organizations. For each pledge taken, Organics Unlimited will make a donation to DonorsChoose.org in support of programs that focus on health and wellness classroom projects across the country.
“Organics Unlimited is always looking for new, innovative ways to express the benefits of healthy living through organic bananas,” states President of Organics Unlimited, Mayra Velazquez de Leon. “We are very excited to join Produce for Kids in their efforts to create a healthier nation.”
Tie-ins with back-to-school messaging and healthy eating will be at the forefront of the Power Your Lunchbox Pledge website. A Twitter party will also be held on Wednesday, August 20, 2014, for anyone interested in communicating with the participating produce companies first-hand.
Thanks to your support of the GROW Program, there are many children in Mexico and Ecuador who are able to achieve a brighter future and a better education. Letters are sent from the GROW scholars updating us on their progress in school and community service – opportunities they would not have if it were not for your involvement in the program.
After the jump you will find letters of inspiration from a few of our GROW scholars that are very thankful for your support.
Celebrate those that volunteer on April 20 for Volunteer Recognition Day. Organics Unlimited held a contest for one lucky winner to receive a paid volunteer trip experience with Project Amigo in Colima, Mexico, one of the major funds recipients of GROW. This March, Karla “Sam” Gonzalez, the winner visited Cofradía de Suchitlán, a small village in Colima; to partake in the Literacy and Environment week with Project Amigo. We would like share Sam’s story with you, and you can learn more about her experience after the jump. Continue reading
San Diego, CA (March 18, 2014) – Alberto Ramirez Rivera, former GROW scholar who graduated in 2012 from the University of Colima with a major in agronomy, has recently joined the farming operations of Organics Unlimited. Ramirez is the new general manager of production at Rancho El Tesoro, the company-owned banana farms in southern Mexico.
“We are excited to have Alberto as a part of our growing team in Mexico,” said Organics Unlimited President Mayra Velazquez de Leon. “He was an outstanding student and a natural leader from the time he joined the GROW program in junior high school. When the position became available, we sought him out based on what we had previously seen with his interest and commitment both to our program and with his work ethic.”
In his new position, Ramirez is responsible for the quality of the fruit, from planting through harvesting. This includes the application of organic fertilizers, protection from pests and quality control at harvest. “Throughout my studies I have had a passion for organic growing and the benefits for both the workers and the environment,” said Ramirez. “I am very proud to be part of this great organization.” Ramirez worked as a young boy on banana farms in the local area, and is one of 44 students who have now completed university studies through the GROW program.
The GROW program was started by Organics Unlimited in 2005 to help the communities in the areas where their bananas are grown. Since that time, the program has provided over $750,000 for programs in Mexico and Ecuador that cover a variety of social issues: education from elementary to university level students, safe drinking water, vision clinics, dental clinics and early childhood education. All funding for GROW is through a small surcharge on the sale of GROW bananas.
Did you know there are many alternative uses bananas other than eating them? That’s because bananas are a super fruit with so many interesting qualities and characteristics that cannot be contained; it’s ripe with opportunity to be used for more than just sustenance. Although eating nutritious and delicious bananas the biggest selling point in stores, try these 17 fun alternatives for bananas that kids will be interested in. Continue reading
This past January, volunteers from the Project Amigo English as a Second Language Work Week assisted nearly 30 Project Amigo staff members and scholarship students on a day trip with 111 kids at La Boquita in Manzanillo. They plan to make this trip again this February. Continue reading
Last week we talked about the Safe Water Project that continues to thrive thanks to your wonderful support of the GROW program. We’d like to share with you that the Early Childhood Education Program in Ecuador has developed and expanded to six sponsorship areas. They are now working with 388 children, ages 3-5. Participants include sponsored children, siblings and relatives of sponsored children, and children from the communities in which Community Centers are located. Continue reading