Agriculture has been a major part of my life since I was a little girl. My parents taught me how to garden and cook at a young age. However, when I went off to college at Bloomsburg University, I was taught about overpopulation and the thought of people that are food insecure—well, it completely baffled me. This was the time in my life where everything clicked into place that I want to help people that are food insecure.
After college, as recommended by my favorite college professor, I enrolled into the AmeriCorps. I wanted to help a community with relieving hunger. So, that’s what I did. In my first year as an AmeriCorps member, I was employed by a nonprofit that relieved hunger and gave awareness to homelessness in Hartford, Ct. My position, when I was there, was giving the community access to food, since the nonprofit’s serving population was low income and homeless families. It is hard for some people to go to the grocery store, since there is only one in Hartford, which is on the outskirts of downtown Hartford. The grocery store, that they go to, is the Walmart. It’s not the best grocery store in my opinion for them, especially factoring in human safety and customer assistance.. However, for them, it’s the only place that they can access food. Because of lack of knowledge and lack of money, people buy food that is not good for them. So, part of my job also, up there, was to assist on creating a healthy lifestyle for them and to educate them on nutrition and agriculture. I taught students, all of ages, and the homeless about gardening and how to grow food, whereas they cannot always receive healthy food and were not taught about these things in school, that I felt that they needed to know about. It blew my mind how many people did not have knowledge of what is healthy and junk food in the area.