The video below of Clint Smith, a D.C. school teacher who witnesses the complications first hand, graphically describes the grim problems we must unquestionably overcome. I watched him recite this poem, Place Matters, on stage and found it to be very moving. He explains the plight his students encounter daily due to inadequate food access and the tragic consequences. He insists we replace "pollution with solution" and that his students, who are struggling to survive, are "warriors" and like "roses growing from concrete".
WE FOSTER DIRECT RELATIONSHIPS TO FOOD. In a vegetable garden, the act of planting, tending and harvesting gives gardeners a direct relationship to his or her food. This is a city where many residents must buy food at gas stations or convenience stores with bulletproof windows in monitored transactions. Against this backdrop it is revolutionary and empowering to put one’s hands in soil and control one’s food source.
In addition, the USDA has expanded the SNAP program to allow purchases at farmers markets which is an excellent use of this resource for the recipients. This aids programs like Keep Growing Detroit since they are making farmers markets more accessible to people who have SNAP resources to purchase the fresh produce.
Access to fresh vegetables and fruit does increase usage within households as studies have shown. The more we can aid the efforts to improve access to these natural products, the more we'll help struggling people within our local communities who desperately need it.