Whether it’s quality of teachers or resources or lunch or one of a million other factors, schools provide a clear lens on many aspects of our society - the good and the bad. The power of hope, aspiration and challenge, but also inequality – where it exists and how it proliferates.
And while this issue is incredibly complicated and nuanced to fix, there are some people and organizations ambitious enough, brave enough to tackle it.
DC Greens is one of them. Working inside schools at every level of the institution, outside in gardens, throughout the communities where students live and among the country’s decision-makers, this team is solving for one important offender to equality: food.
And DC Greens is finding creative solutions to address this issue - a curriculum for teachers who want to bring food education into the classroom, a Produce Plus program that provides greater access to fresh foods through the DC farmers markets, a fruits and vegetables prescription program in local clinics, and a series of opportunities for young people in this city to learn about food from every angle - health and wellness, cooking, gardening and even business.
DC Greens is arming people not with pamphlets but with real, hands-on understanding and tools to ensure access and knowledge about how food can impact our lives is not one of the barriers kids have to break through just to get an equal footing as they step into the world.
And they’re raising awareness about the severity of this challenge with others in the community who can contribute – either financially or with their own skills and networks. Chefs, restaurants, lawmakers, cultural tastemakers and others from across the area's food system who have a voice people are listening to, they're helping DC Greens effect even greater change.
You'll see some of these people and organizations - including Spike Mendelsohn, Rob Weland, Daniel Giusti, Chaia, Gordy's, Green Hat Gin, in these photos from DC Greens’ Spring Dig event.
I’m proud of the work DC Greens is doing in my city and am excited to continue documenting their impact as it grows.