Faculty Publications

Document Type


Publication Date

January 2018


School gardens are an ideal space to deliver a healthy living curriculum, such as nutrition and physical activity education, to elementary school youth. However, public schools often lack the resources and support to establish sustainable garden-based programming. We created the Healthy Living Ambassador program, a collaborative after-school garden program in low-income communities that brought together resources from schools, community programs, and University of California Cooperative Extension. This school garden program featured culturally competent teens as teachers to serve as near-peer educators and mentors to elementary school youth. The program development model incorporated lessons from sustainable community-based health program interventions and essential elements of teens-as-teachers programs. We share the program logic model and discuss the successes and challenges of this program model that we encountered while developing a long-term, maintainable community garden program to teach healthy living.


This article was published in the Journal of Youth Development, volume 13, issue 3, 2018. It is also available at this link.
Copyright (c) 2018 Virginia LJ Bolshakova, John Gieng, C Sheena Sidhu, Mary Vollinger, Lorena Gimeno This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.