This page was last modified on 08 October 2012, at 01:58
Background & History
In 2005, only after ten days FirstLine Charter Schools first opened their doors to hundreds of children, Hurricane Katrina devastated the city of New Orleans.  Due to the destruction of Katrina, these schools experienced severe flooding and the lives of these students and their families were traumatized. A year later in 2006, as part of the recovery effort for the city, the schoolyard of Samuel J. Green Charter School became the Edible Schoolyard New Orleans, or ESYNOLA. Now in 2012, the project could not have been started without the help of countless volunteers, including culinary legend Emeril Lagasse and New Orleans Saints star quarterback Drew Brees. 
Mission & Vision
“Founded in 2006, Edible Schoolyard New Orleans (ESY NOLA) changes the way kids eat, learn, and live at five (5) FirstLine public charter schools in New Orleans. Our goal is to improve the long-term well being of our students, families, and school community. We do this by integrating hands-on organic gardening and seasonal cooking into the school curriculum, culture, and cafeteria programs.” 
“ESY NOLA involves students in all aspects of growing, harvesting, preparing and enjoying food together as a means of awakening their senses, cultivating a school environment that promotes a sense of pride and responsibility for our land and natural resources, and developing a love of fresh, seasonal foods.” 
Activities & Programs
Ever since its inception in 2006, Edible Schoolyard New Orleans has strived to improve the lives of the students and communities of the organization’s five FirstLine school campuses. ESY NOLA integrates hands-on organic gardening and seasonal cooking into the school curriculum, culture, and cafeteria programs. The program involves students in all aspects of growing, harvesting, preparing and enjoying food together as a means of awakening their senses, cultivating a school environment that promotes a sense of pride and responsibility for our land and natural resources, and developing a love of fresh, seasonal food. 
Cultural & Economic Impact of Organization
According to ESY NOLA Executive Director Claudia Barker, the organization “helps the student volunteers, who of which 35% are overweight and 20% are obese, improve their nutrition and wellness. Ultimately, these lifestyles changes can have a direct impact on academic achievement, especially success on standardized tests.”  Furthermore, since about 95% of the organization’s students, who live in low-to-moderate-income New Orleans neighborhoods and are eligible for free and reduced-priced meals, a cost-saving alternative means of food is available. 
1. Grow Dat Youth Farm (http://growdatyouthfarm.org)
2. Lowernine.org (http://lowernine.org)
3. New Orleans Food and Farm Network (http://www.noffn.org)
- O’Meara 2011.
- O’ Meara 2011.
- “Edible School Yard New Orleans Celebrates its 5th Year” 2011.
- “The Edible Schoolyard New Orleans” 2009.
- “Edible Schoolyard” 2012.
- Claudia 2012.
- “Edible Schoolyard” 2012.