Our founders were ahead of their time in terms of sustainability, thinking proactively and safeguarding resources to ensure a strong future. They envisioned and established a bank to help create opportunities—to help sustain resources—for people and communities to prosper. That notion of sowing today to thrive tomorrow brings into play the core values central to how we’ve served clients and communities since the 1800s.
It’s also why we accepted the American Heart Association’s invitation to sponsor the very first Teaching Garden in Harrison County, Mississippi, at Anniston Elementary School in Gulfport. Teaching Gardens—a concept cultivated by AHA across the country—integrate elements critical to sustaining and growing opportunities for new generations: education, environment, health, teamwork, and accountability.
By showing kindergartners through fifth graders how to plant, nurture, and harvest gardens, these living outdoor laboratories help students learn science, respect nature, work together, and adopt healthy eating habits. With one third of the nation’s children overweight or obese and at higher risk for heart disease and stroke, a Teaching Garden can change how kids and their parents think about food, encourage healthier lifestyles, and sustain longer lives.
We applaud the leaders, educators, and volunteers who have helped implement Teaching Gardens. Realizing the value of our veggies goes well beyond horticulture and healthy eating. The important experiences Teaching Gardens offer help provide young people life lessons they need to plant their futures, care for their communities, and reap what they contribute.
We believe if our children—and all of us—dig deep to understand the fundamentals these gardens teach, we can sustain the places we call home for years to come.
Enjoy these photos of Hancock Bank volunteers building and planting the Teaching Garden at Anniston Avenue Elementary School in Gulfport, Mississippi.