All the projects that we are working on this semester, I believe, will support the notion of civic agriculture as described by Delind in her article. But in specific I am trying to work on both the True Greens and New Roots project… and thus, give a response to both. 🙂
Starting with the New Roots project, this initiative has obvious intents in helping the greater community by including not just locals or UMBC students, but refugees to become their own farmers and thus become connected with the food they produce and consume. We as UMBC students already have the community garden for ourselves– but it is a great effort to reach out even further to also include communities outside of the UMBC niche to join this movement. It shows the amount of awareness in how interconnected we all are, and in our case it has to do with food. We can no longer look at how matters affect us individually or those closest to us, but also learn to integrate the entire community collectively because essentially we all affect one another on both a small and large scale. Along with the True Greens effort, it connects to the larger community by giving people the resources to eat fresh and local produce whereas at first they may not have the motivation or resources to do so. True greens brings fresh greens to UMBC members who may be already anticipating this project, or people who are completely unaware but exposing them to new ways of viewing food. To be and think as more sustainable consumers we first need alternatives.
Having that said, in working on the True Greens project we are providing the alternative that will allow people to think and act more sustainably while starting this on a small scale at the greenhouse on campus. As Dominic mentioned during his permaculture discussion, it is also important to start simple and realisitically. Not to get ahead of ourselves in trying to fix everything all at once, because then we may not be helping anyone at all. Moreover, in collaboration with True Greens, I hope to develop a project where I will design a micro-greens home growing kit that will allow people to become even more connected by giving them the autonomy to become their own growers right at home. The closer we bring food to people the more connected and educated they can become about what they are consuming in their diets. Not only does this educate people more about food, but it also empowers them.