Wow! I am so impressed and feel empowered by everything that has happened thus far in just the first 2 weeks of our INDS 430 class! This makes me ecstatic and hopeful about all that is to come this semester and in the future! The direction the World’s food systems are going frightens me! To think that fresh water is soon to become a scarce resource on Earth is terrifying! After hearing all of the projects for this semester it is so hard for me to pick just one! I intend on gaining insight from a couple of projects since they all are great and very fascinating. After much thought I narrowed it down to my top 3 projects. I decided to breakdown some background to why I would like to be affiliated with the projects I chose.
FOOD FOREST & CLIMATE GARDEN:
I recently had a conversation with one of my cousins from New York City, who is an activist on food justice and conducts workshops around the City about building/maintaining community gardens, policies, and much more (which I won’t get into right now); but, something in particular that he said which I found interesting was, “it trips me out how folks in the suburbs have all this lawn space and all they grow is grass. grass! people are using a scarce resource – water – to grow grass. imagine how much food could be grown instead!” My 2 eldest cousins (the one I just spoke of and his brother) have been in the Humanities field and beyond passionate about food justice (overall justice) since I was a baby. They would always try to educate my family on what is becoming of Mother Nature, which at times only sounded like horror stories. Now as a young adult it is time for me to contribute in positive efforts to help our food system and educating others. I hope to learn many new techniques and knowledge on permaculture lifestyle.
NEW ROOTS GARDEN:
I’ve always had a strong connection with food, open to trying new foods from different cultures. Food is very significant in my culture and upbringing. My mother is big on gardening, most of our backyard is filled with all of her vegetables, from tomatoes, peppers, spinach, squash, zucchini, eggplant, pumpkin, (just to name some on the top of my head) but there are more. I remember when my grandfather was on this Earth, he would send seeds of certain vegetables that my mother loved and couldn’t find in the States (or maybe she just liked the ones from back Home). Overall she loved gardening and felt such an accomplishment from it. She would always share stories and updates about her garden to her 4 sisters, who also love gardening! They proudly share and exchange the crops they grow all. Having witnessed the joy and fulfillment in my Bangladeshi mother and aunts, I would want the same for other foreigners in this country.
As I’m getting older and becoming more educated I value eating healthy and organic produce much more, although at times its not as easy to practice. I find myself having to settle for Chick-fil-a on campus or not having sufficient funds to shop for organic produce. I would be honored to help in the foundation of a healthy movement for UMBC. Not only would it benefit UMBC right now, it will help its future as well. Having experience to what this campus has to offer as far as healthy choices and cost efficient foods, I understand the need/importance of this project.