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Health Equity

Sowing seeds for a healthier community through partnerships

Established in 1990, Mercy and Memorial Hospitals Community Grants Program is an opportunity to collaborate with other nonprofit organizations working to improve the health status and quality of life in the communities we serve. Since the program began, Dignity Health Bakersfield has awarded over $4.5 million to nearly 70 different agencies in Kern County.

The Edible Schoolyard (ESY) Program Kern County is one of those organizations supported by Dignity Health Bakersfield.

The Edible Schoolyard Kern County traces its roots to the pioneering work of Alice Waters and the Edible Schoolyard Project in Berkeley, California.

At its heart, the ESY provides a dynamic and hands-on learning experience for students, encouraging them to discover and develop a healthy relationship with food.

In 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Edible Schoolyard expanded its partnership with California State University, Bakersfield to assist a growing number of students experiencing food insecurity. Using the ESY model, CSUB’s Edible Garden is a thriving, eco-efficient farm providing nourishment to those in need and connecting students to each other and the Earth.

Dignity Health Bakersfield continues to invest in edible education projects, providing funding for a new Edible Garden at Bakersfield College that will open in Fall 2020.