Yesterday during our staff meeting, a young man, Jose, came to the front door of the Ralph Bunche House and knocked. He'd seen our sign in the window (it says something about food revolutionaries) when he'd been staying in the neighborhood. Jose's dad was waiting outside for him in his pick up truck; this man took time out of his work day to bring his son to see us. Jose wanted to know more about what RootDown LA is up to. (Funny, just before he walked in, Karen asked me if we could find the funds to hire some students to help her in the garden.) Jose shared - he has been teaching himself more about healthy eating this year. He got himself a juicer, and he tries to buy organic produce from Ralph's (though he's not happy with their selection or prices). He wanted to know what he could do to get involved. We could think of a dozen ideas.
We're in an important place. Now at three sites, we're honing a model for Youth-driven Local Food Sites. We train youth to build demand for healthy food with our cooking, nutrition and food systems lessons, and we have started to create supplies of healthy local food via our horticultural trainings, residential garden installations, and neighborhood compost programs. Young people are taking notice and they are asking to get involved. It's a good time to think about the way in which your donation could go a long way to give even one ambitious young person a meaningful (and paid) experience, helping to build healthier urban food communities.
$25.00 - a stipend for a Youth Leader to help facilitate a community food event $300.00 - What it costs to put a student through our more intensive culinary or horticultural trainings $9,360.00 - what it costs to create a new position for a part time youth staff member
Please think about it, and if you are in a position to give: http://rootdownla.org/whats-needed/.