Food: Farm to Table, 17th Exchange
Only when we have fallen back in love with the earth will our actions spring from reverence and the insight of our interconnectedness. -Thich Nhat Hanh
The conversations we have been having over the last couple months might be the most engaged students have ever been! In some classes, students have been nearly jumping over each other to comment. We have been pleasantly surprised to hear in opening circles that anywhere from 50-75% of students have grown food at some time. We have been tracing the pathways from Farm to Table, and it has been an enlightening process for all to think of the numerous folks we have to be thankful for nourishing us everyday. Of course, we are also looking at how our choices impact the environment, and the choices we always have for healthier, both to our bodies, and the Earth that sustains us.
To bolster these topics, we have also been talking to farmers. Those with their hands in the dirt, and connected to the many complexities of growing food- soil, bees, regions, weather, seeds, and so on. Daniel Reynolds, owner of a 80 acre farm in Athens, GA that supplies local restaurants and his landscaping company, shares how important the bees have been in his yields. Daniel reports that once they added their own hives on the property, their yields doubled!
Victory Gardens founders echo Reynolds message, and recommend having native pollinator flowers near the vegetable gardens. Kerry and Reid are creating ecological spaces around Savannah, helping with school gardens, and teaching everywhere they are.
Bremen has recently started a new homestead farm, just outside of Atlanta, that supplies healthy snacks to the after school programming his wife runs at Soul Shine. Bremen has farmed in Hawaii and the mid-west, before settling in GA. His nearly 3 year-old, Clementine, joins him in preparing the fields. He laughs as he shares she engaged and chased the chickens for 25 minutes, not even looking up. Their family is committed to engaging their own children in being connected to the Earth, while also joyously teaching this in their after school programming in inner city Atlanta, bringing the farm in reach.
We’ll be traveling to Ghana soon, and have the same discussion in schools, and with those farming, and in the markets, in Ghana. We are so grateful to the countless people that nourish us everyday, and that teach our children well.