Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Youth Farm and Market Project

Courtesy of Youth Farm

A non-profit organization in Minnesota is working with youth from ages 9 to 18 to connect them to their food.

“It’s about a new way of bringing quality healthy food to urban neighborhoods and exploring culinary traditions from around the world – cooking and distributing over 11,000 pounds of fresh, local produce. It’s about community involvement – engaging over 400 volunteers in over 4,000 hours of service to their community,” says the website.

They focus on three main areas: urban agriculture, project LEAD, and cultural nutrition.

Urban Agriculture

Work with kids on 2+ acres of land spreading across plots on vacant lots, public housing high-rises, private lands, and churches to grow vegetables and sell the crops at different neighborhood markets.

Project LEAD

Offer paid internships and summer employment for 25 teenagers ages 14-18 where they can develop power and public leadership skills in their neighborhoods. They then can apply the skills through their work on producing and distributing local produce. They also supervise, mentor and create strong relationships with younger kids.

Cultural Nutrition

Using food as a means to educate the kids about different cultures, Youth Farm works with young leaders to learn how to grow, cook, and distribute traditional foods found in South and Central America, Asia, Africa, Europe and other countries.

The video shows several perspectives from kids and leaders where they talk about the benefits. Great program to keep kids engaged and encourage growth outside of school.

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