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2019 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Seeds in the Middle

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Education, Elementary & Secondary Schools, Food, Literacy, Nutrition, Soccer, Sports, Youth Development Programs

Mission: Seeds in the Middle, named by fourth graders in central Brooklyn, inspires and empowers students, families, schools and communities to access all the opportunities life has to offer, beginning by improving their health. We teach how to grow (gardens), how to market, how to access and prepare healthy food, how to exercise, how to engage in the arts, all elements needed for life-changing, lifelong health.

Results: In less than a year, we have inspired children, parents and school faculties in the heart of the obesity epidemic to pay attention to their health, to discuss what's healthy, to eat and shop more nutritiously, to cook at home and stay clear of fast food, and engage in exercise. Hundreds of children are in our sports and arts programs and in projects that engage them in greening, marketing healthy food, taking cooking classes and being exposed to new opportunities.

Target demographics: and empower low-income children and families in the unhealthiest zones of the United States

Direct beneficiaries per year: 150-200 students in central Brooklyn and Flatbush schools and in sports

Geographic areas served: New York City, mainly central Brooklyn

Programs: Growing gardens indoor and outdoor, curriculum in-class support for teachers to intertwine healthy lifestyle with math and literacy goals, Hip2B Healthy markets sell nutritious snacks for less than the bodega's chips and soda, sports give children a chance to move, chef nights teach a family how to cook healthy and have fun for less than the cost of a fast food combo meal, parent breakfasts train underprivileged parents to organize to advocate for their children in school and access job opportunities

Community Stories

37 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Zelaina A.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Seeds in the middle is really what they stand for and doesn’t just talk the talk but takes action in giving back and making a difference in their community ! They are a great organization that really impacts their community and also the Youth !

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering with Seeds in the Middle for over a month now and I can say that it is an honest organization with a clear and supportive objective. I love volunteering at the farm stand and supplying fresh fruits and vegetables to all those that come by. Nancie is wonderful and truly cares about the endeavor towards providing equitable and healthy food city wide.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Seeds in the Middle is fantastic. I feel so grateful to have been able to plug into the amazing work they are doing. Food justice is so important - it touches so many other issues that effect the daily lives of New Yorkers, so to have a hand in ensuring equitable access to nutritious food is to be of service in other ways as well. I would love to see this organization expand its team, become more organized, and further its reach, because Seeds in the Middle is doing amazing work!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I’ve been working with seeds in the middle since before the start of the quarantine, and I continue to work with them because of how inspired I am to be the best version of me possible. Helping people, being a part of something bigger than myself, and interacting with people in my neighborhood and schools around me is the perfect kind of work to do during and following the quarantine. I hope to see more people take advantage of these resources and help out in the future!

Client Served

Rating: 5

Obtaining fresh veggies from the market is a greater experience than in the supermarket, you can explore , feel and look and see a different raw beauty of the veggies that will enter your home , stay fresh and become a part of your life .

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I was a Marketing Intern for The Seeds in the Middle.
It was an interesting experience, I learned a lot, starting from marketing and ending with event organizing.

Volunteer

Rating: 4

As a volunteer for Seeds in the Middle "Tastes of Brooklyn" events, I have been so impressed with the enthusiasm and determination to obtain funding for such an important cause within underserved communities. Working to organize events to benefit bringing access to fresh fruits and vegetables to youth and their families, Seeds has developed a loyal following of people that we continue to see at events with a similar passion for the goals to be achieved. I look forward to continuing as a volunteer and watching the support for Seeds and Seeds programming grow.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

i really think the program is amazing i like the fact that we can sell food to our peers it also teaches you to be social

Yvette W.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I learned of Seeds in the Middle from the school my children's school shares a campus with. I love that the neighborhood and children have a healthy resource. My daughter enjoys volunteering in the program and is promoting eating the fruit instead of the children buying unhealthy snacks from the store.
I decided to volunteer as well and I am encouraging the school to adapt the program. My daughter brings home fruits and vegetables and is incorporating in her meals more and encouraging her siblings to as well. Nancie is very kind and genuinely cares about making sure the children have healthy choices and better resources.

Jinetta S.

Volunteer

Rating: 4

It's a great activity for kids. My son enjoys it, but I wish they were more kids involved.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I like the notion of team work being foster by the team captains for the children was great.
My kid have a good time learning new skills with peers.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Great experience, it was well organized and the kids were adorable!

Candice Lawrence

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Seeds In The Middle is an amazing program that is helping to positively change lives daily. Seeds In The Middle provides knowledge, guidance, resources, and fun to underserved youth. The students who take part in this program learn so many elements on healthy living - from learning about fresh foods and nutrition, to running a student-led "Hip2BHealthy" food market (offering healthy alternatives to traditional unhealthy after school snacks, to engaging in sports and movement with its Crown Heights Soccer Program. I absolutely love this organization and have entrusted them with all my children - helping with academic and physical growth. They are the BEST!!!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Amazing for the community. Helps our children learn teamwork, dedication & how to understand athleticism.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Very happy I found this organization! The owner has a great vision and is doing all she can to execute a great program for Brooklyn youth and at an extremely affordable rate! My son loves soccer Saturdays

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Amazing team of committed coaches! The kids always have a great time, they are the reason that everyone shows up! Amazing little community here!

Jennifer E.5

Client Served

Rating: 5

Seeds In the Middle has provided a great experience for the students at Hudde. Not only have they provided fresh fruits and vegetables to the school community at reasonable prices they have helped students build confidence as they volunteer in the school, learned about healthy eating and even how to cook!

Client Served

Rating: 5

This was the first time my boys had any experience with organized soccer. The coaches are wonderful and make it fun for them. They are excited to go every week!

Client Served

Rating: 5

Seeds in the Middle offers a great soccer program for youths in Crown Heights and surrounding neighborhoods. Over the past year, my toddler has been enrolled in the soccer program, his love and skills for the game has developed tremendously. They have excellent coaches that work well with the kids to make the game fun. I would love to see this program grow into a competitive level with a full team of players.

Victor Wills

Client Served

Rating: 5

Seeds in the Middle is an amazing non-profit with so much to offer families and youth in under served neighborhoods of Brooklyn. My son plays soccer with Seeds in the Middle every weekend. I truly appreciate Seeds in the Middle for providing a program that I can afford in order for my son to participate in extra curricular activities. The CEO is so helpful and truly cares about the people. I will always support Seed in the Middle as they provide nothing but quality to my community and so many others around BK.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Nancie works tirelessly to promote health and wellness to young people. Mission is to bring fresh produce to communities which might not have access.Getting young people involved with exercise and healthy eating is the most important!

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I started participating in Seeds in the Middle as their media volunteer after my husband became a coach for their soccer program in Brooklyn. What drew me to the organisation was the diversity among its organisers, volunteers and young soccer players. Although it may seem like a simple soccer program it means a lot to these kids who feel welcomed and part of a team, regardless of their age, gender and background. It is heartwarming to hear about the kids' growth and progress from my husband - how some first start as shy kids and becoming more outgoing and others continue their habit of being soft spoken and helpful by offering to tidy up after the soccer games. Seeds in the Middle is doing a wonderful job creating affordable sports activities while still keeping it professional, well-organised and consistent.

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I started volunteering with Seeds in the middle two years ago and it has been a rewarding experience. Through soccer, practice and gameplay, we bring together young kids from the Crown Heights community in Brooklyn NY to teach them soccer skills, social skills, and help them bond with all the diverse people in their community. We make every child feel accomplished by celebrating their special moments on the soccer field, in competition. Seeds in the middle facilitates the need to bring kids together to do a healthy activity, in an environment where everyone counts and has their moment to shine. Congratulations to everyone at seeds in the middle for their noble work!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Seeds in the middle promotes good health for everyone. Student centered, community centered. It brings fruits and veggies to communities which may not have access. Provides students the chance to run a fresh food market, learn life skills and advocacy.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

This is the first year my son is playing both soccer and basketball with Seeds in the Middle and he absolutely loves it. The coaches are patient and work very well with the children. Well worth it!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

My daughter has been playing soccer with Seeds in the Middle for the last two seasons and she loves it! She looks forward to going every week! The coaches are great with the kids and all the kids feel included, no matter what their skill level.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Seeds in the Middle provided resources to our students and afforded opportunities that could not be done within limited resources within the school community. Seeds in the Middle worked with a team of teachers and students to increase engagement and awareness to our school and surrounding community on choosing healthy eating and living. The partnership offered trips to Yale Club restaurant with students working in the kitchen with top chefs creating healthy dishes. In addition, the partnership provided teaching skills to our students on how to be entrepreneurs, leadership skills, team building and advocacy on healthy food for the community. Students learned about healthy eating habits and community service. In addition to being cultivated and learning etiquette. Students engaged in a healthy market for our school community to advocate and influence healthy options. Parent Workshops were provided inviting a chef and their team to work with families in the kitchen cooking an entire affordable and healthy meal for everyone to enjoy together. Nutrition was discussed in the workshop along with affordable options to purchasing healthy and nutritious foods. Seeds in the Middle provided a resource that helped increase parent engagement and bringing the community together to help build strong community ties through healthy eating.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Our middle school, I.S. 240, participated in a farmers market. We were able to create a small business. It was an opportunity to offer fresh fruit, vegetables and juices to our school community in the morning and during special events. The students were so excited to participate. It also gave us a chance to engage with some parents and have a few laughs. Imagine we were promoting grapes, strawberries, kale, spinach, fresh mint, apples, bananas,cranberries, blueberries, smoothies, juices; all the products were well received.

Client Served

Rating: 5

We love Seeds In Middle! For such an fortable rate my son is able to enjoy soccer every Sunday at a local park. It is the only organization which provides a healthy way for children to get together and get their energy out in a healthy way. The children learn what it means to be a team player and work together irrelevant of their ethnic, religion or race.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Seeds in the Middle is a great organization that brings resources to school-age children that inspire them to make changes in their life and community!

Client Served

Rating: 5

Great community organization that provides fun and engaging programs along with fresh fruit and vegetable markets for children.

Client Served

Rating: 5

This is my son's 2nd soccer season with Seeds in the Middle and he still loves it. The volunteer coaches are AMAZING. They are patient, knowledgeable and overall great people. I love that the participants and coaches are so diverse. It's the first time I've ever seen kids from all shades of Crown Heights come together-- Hasidic, Black, Asian, Blasian, Latino and I am sure I am missing nationalities. It's more than soccer. It's an amazing lesson in diversity, teamwork, hardwork and fun. And my son is only 4! The future is bright,

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My experiences volunteering with Seeds in the Middle have not only been rewarding, but enjoyable as well. Helping with the Hip2BHealthy Market is an incredible experience that promotes children to stay healthy and have fun while doing it. I also helped out with their worm composting activities in public schools. It was a wonderful experience working hands-on with the students and seeing how engaged they were in composting and planting! I truly love Seeds in the Middle and all they do for Brooklyn youth!

Onique B.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My son is a first time participant of the seeds in the middle organization. We met every Sunday where coaches would show up even if they were a few children. My son loved being able to meet new friends and learn the art of playing soccer. We will definitely be returning next season with hopes of bringing along other children.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was impressed by how organized this was, especially since it's led by volunteers. They were fantastic with the kids and my son learned so much. They really focus on learning skills to be successful in soccer.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

At a time where most people's lifestyles are increasingly sedentary and everyone seems just too busy to eat nutritiously and exercise regularly, it's great to see what Seeds in the Middle is doing for disadvantaged children and the communities they come from. As the kids are playing an active role in growing the very foods they eat, I see them come alive with excitement at seeing the harvest of the seeds they have sowed with their own hands. They are learning at a young age that they can have an impact on their surroundings and be agents for change in their communities. What better time to start than now?

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My kids have been attending the soccer at Seeds in the Middle for a few years now. It's a great program to get the kids moving for over 2 hours every Sunday. It also helps foster a positive environment for the different cultures in my neighborhood who play side by side.