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Houghton Jones Urban Ag
 

Houghton Jones Urban Ag

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Revised presentation made at 2009 Cities of Promise Conference in Lansing, MI.

Revised presentation made at 2009 Cities of Promise Conference in Lansing, MI.

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    Houghton Jones Urban Ag Houghton Jones Urban Ag Presentation Transcript

    • Houghton-Jones/Saginaw East-Central Neighborhood Association (HJ/SENA) Supporting Healthy Youth, Families, and Communities Presented by: Bakari M. McClendon, HJ/SENA President
    • History & Mission
      • HJ/SENA officially organized and incorporated as Houghton-Jones Neighborhood Task Force, Inc. in the fall of 1992 as a 501©3 non-profit neighborhood improvement organization.
      • The mission of HJ/SENA is to foster a sense of community in the area and to empower the residents and stakeholders to restore the neighborhood to safety, beauty and comfort.
    • Programs & Activities
      • HJ/SENA Resource Center
        • THRIFT STORE “Restored Treasures” ($1 Sale!)
      • All Around the Neighborhood Summer Day Camp
      • “ Saginaw Seedfolks” Youth Farm Stand
      • Neighborhood Watch / Block Club meetings
        • Saginaw Police Dept. Community Policing Program
      • Saginaw Urban Food Initiative
    • The “Big” Picture
      • “ Food is our medium for achieving broader outcomes in community development and public health and addressing disparities in opportunities and quality of life.” – Brahm Ahmadi
    • The “Bottom Line”
      • “ People who own property feel a sense of ownership in their future and their society. They study, save, work, strive and vote. And people trapped in a culture of tenancy do not.”
        • – Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
    • Urban Farming Overview
      • Goal: Provide healthy foods and good jobs while educating the community members.
      • Secure vacant/ abandoned lots from the Saginaw County Land Bank Authority
      • Establish a network of lots-turned-gardens
      • Manage micro-farmers’ markets
      • Provide technical support for EBT/WIC/ Senior Project FRESH
      • Provide nutritional education
      • Establish year-round “good food” corner stores /retail locations to scale
    • Why are Youth Farm Stands Important?
      • "More than 75% of children ages 6-11 do not eat the minimum of 3 servings of vegetables or 2 servings of fruit daily.”
    • Why are Youth Farm Stands Important?
      • "This epidemic increase in childhood overweight is particularly prevalent among African American and Hispanic children, with more than 21% of these groups meeting the classification of overweight. It is estimated that about half of overweight school-agers and 70% of overweight teens will remain obese into adulthood."
    • Why are Youth Farm Stands Important?
      • The Michigan Economic Development Corporation warns that diet-related healthcare costs -- $12.3 billion annually for cardiovascular diseases alone– are slowing economic growth and job creation in the state.
    • Why are Youth Farm Stands Important?
      • From US Surgeon General: Overweight and obesity are associated with heart disease, certain types of cancer, type 2 diabetes, stroke, arthritis, breathing problems, and psychological disorders, such as depression.
    • Same old song….?
      • In Michigan, the number of children participating in free and reduced lunch programs has also grown.
      • U.S. Census reports that “the only state in the nation where poverty actually increased was Michigan” (Roelofs, 2008b).
      • The average daily lunch program at the Eastside Soup Kitchen in Saginaw has increased by 80 diners over the past two years(Long, 2008).
      • Antidotal evidence abounds of elderly who are forced to choose between prescription medicine or food and a growing movement toward self-sufficiency through backyard gardening.
    • Definition of Terms
      • Food deserts are large and isolated geographic areas that cluster that have no or distant grocery stores (Gallagher)
      • Food Security is all persons in a community having access to culturally acceptable, nutritionally adequate food through local, non-emergency sources at all times (Comm. Food Sec. Coalition)
    •  
    •  
    • Who cares about food security?
      • Distance influences
        • How much we pay for food
        • The type of food we buy
      • In the city of Saginaw
        • 14.7 % of households do not have a car
        • 24.7% of families live in poverty
        • 25.6% of people 21 to 64 reported a disability
    • Who cares about food security?
      • In 2006, 35.5 million Americans lived in “food insecure households,” comprising 22.8 million adults and 12.6 million children. (United States Dept. of agriculture, economic research service, 2006 http://www.ers.usda.gov/Briefing/FoodSecurity/trends.htm
      • “ Many in LMI communities are forced to patronize liquor stores selling Cheetos and Snickers—if they’re lucky maybe a potato or banana—all at 30-70 percent higher prices than regular stores.” (Brahm Ahmadi in terview. Feb 2008)
    • Benefits of Urban Agriculture
      • The production, processing and distribution of locally grown edible agricultural products that will lead to an increase in food security and overall public health . CFSC
      • Urban agriculture is a major instrument against hunger and poverty . CFSC
      • The potential for food production is great, and dozens of model projects are demonstrating successfully that urban agriculture is both viable and necessary. CFSC
    • Youth Farm Stand Project Basics
      • The initiative brings young people together to:
        • Experience healthy food and their local food system
        • Think and learn about nutrition and healthy food choices, and
        • Run a “green collar” business: selling healthy food via a farm stand
    • Cultural Relevance through Art
    • Cultural Relevance through Art
    • Cultural Relevance through Art
    • Youth Farm Stand: Nutrition, Entrepreneurship & Gardening
    • Youth Farm Stand: Nutrition, Entrepreneurship & Gardening
    • Youth Farm Stand: Nutrition, Entrepreneurship & Gardening
    • Youth Farm Stand: Nutrition, Entrepreneurship & Gardening
    • Saginaw Urban Food Initiative
    • Green Cardinal Afterschool Program SVSU Environmental Sociology mentors & Houghton-Jones Youth SVSU Greenhouses
    • Our Partners
      • City of Saginaw & Saginaw Police Department
      • Saginaw Community Foundation & Heroes for Kids
      • Dow Chemical Company
      • Saginaw County Land Bank
      • United Way of Saginaw County
      • Saginaw Valley State University
      • Michigan State University Extension
      • Good Neighbors’ Mission
      • Catholic Worker Houses (Mustard Seed & Emmaus)
      • Houghton & Heavenrich Elementary Schools
      • Various Faith-Based & Human Service agencies
    • “ Heart” work is Hard Work!
      • Looking outside for support is good, but ALSO empowering from the inside is better
      • “ Teach a woman to fish…” Parts I & II
      • Questions?
      • THANK YOU!
      • For more info:
      • www.houghtonjones.org