Pollinator Patch Program
Cabot Creamery Co-operative and KidsGardening are please to share with you the Pollinator Patch Program, a free, new resource to help educate today’s youth about the importance of pollinators and teach them practical ways they can help protect and preserve pollinator populations.
More than 150 of our common food crops, from avocados to zucchini, rely directly on pollinators to move pollen among flowers to facilitate fertilization, which ultimately leads to the development of fruits and seeds. Pollination by bees, hummingbirds, moths, bats, butterflies, flies, and beetles ensures the continued existence of millions of plant species, and in turn, of most animal species, including humans. An estimated one of every three mouthfuls of our food depend on pollinators, including the cheese and dairy products produced by the farmers of Cabot!
Studies show that pollinator populations throughout the world have been declining, leading to concerns about the future of our food supply. Disruptions to fruit and vegetable crops are what first come to mind, but looking at our food web, we quickly discover that pollinators impact more than our produce aisles. For example, dairy cows consume both clover and alfalfa, two plants that rely on pollinators for successful seed production. In fact, pollinators directly sustain the vital plant communities necessary for grazing cows. This means, a decrease in pollinators could impact the availability of products like milk, cheese, yogurt, and ice cream too!
The Pollinator Patch Program can be used by any youth education program whether in a classroom or in an after-school setting like Scouts as a way to enhance existing activities or lesson plans. To get started, download the guide from The Cabot Creamery Co-operative website, then dig in.
The featured activities explore four central questions including:
- What do pollinators do?
- Why are pollinators important?
- Why are pollinator populations in decline?
- How can we help protect pollinators?
From making a pollinator placemat to playing the Be the Bee Game, the activities are designed to be simple to implement and require very few materials.
Once your group has completed the activities, fill out the online survey to receive FREE Patches and a Treat Pack! By completing this Patch Program, you and your group will learn about how choices we make at home and in our communities can help preserve pollinator habitats and protect these small but mighty creatures.
The Pollinator Patch joins an impressive collection of existing patch programs from Cabot including The Sustainability Patch, The Fueling Head to Toe Patch, The B Corp Patch, The Gratitude Patch, The Co-ops for Community Patch, The Calcium Challenge Patch, and The Small Steps Towards Sustainability Patch. Make sure to check out all of these free resources for ideas for teaching kids about healthy life skills and how to build sustainable communities.