Several years ago, the creation of a Central Kitchen for the school district entered into the minds of communities members in Sacramento. As proposed, the Central Kitchen is supposed to bring fresh food to SCUSD students. In this video, residents descend on Hiram Johnson High School to discuss the subject.
Farm to fork
On May 6th, the Oak Park Farmers Market opened for its first event of the year. People from all over gathered to enjoy the fruits and vegetables that were on sale and are locally sourced within 150 miles of Oak Park. In this video report, we see just what the farmers have brought us this season.
How do the people of communities get to know the people around them? Recently, at Ethel L. Baker Elementary School, many volunteers, young and old, gathered to bond together through planting trees and helping out their own communities.
The Yisrael Family Farm is offering cooking classes for seniors, families, and teenagers in February, March, and April at the Oak Park Community Center on 3425 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
The class are free to attend and offers multiple time slots for each age group, aiming at ease and accessibility for the general public.
“The type of audience I hope to see at the class is the kind that eats,” says cofounder Judith Yisrael. “I’m looking forward to meeting people who are ready and willing to try new foods and are not afraid to be pushed outside their comfort zone.”
The Yisrael Family Farm was founded by husband and wife team Judith and Chanowk Yisrael in 2007 and is based in the Oak Park area of South Sacramento. The farm was created in part, according the website, in response to the declaration of Oak Park and nearby areas as a ‘food desert’, what the U.S. Department of Agriculture declares as “a low-income census tract where either a substantial number or share of residents has low access to a supermarket or large grocery store”.
The farm, run by Chanowk, Judith and their children, now has over 40 fruit trees and free-roaming chickens. Since its inception, Yisrael’s have founded programs and community outreach efforts, such as We Diggit Urban Gardens, aimed at building gardens for South Sacramento residents at no cost through funding from the California Endowment, and Project GOOD (Growing Our Own Destiny), an educational outreach program for youth field trips and hands-on events. Project GOOD is also the program through which the upcoming cooking classes will be run.
In addition to specific recipes and dishes, the class will teach food safety, nutrition, and basic cooking technique. Each different class will also cater to their respective audience.
“The series for seniors will focus on delicious meals and snacks that won’t take too much time while Family Night Out series will bring families together in the kitchen and focus on teamwork and collaboration,” Judith told Access Sacramento. “Our TGIF Teens will focus on great tasting easy to make meal ideas, such as our Three Sister Tacos and homemade pico de gallo!”
The Seniors Group will be meeting Tuesdays from 10:30am – 12:30pm on February 7th and 21st, March 7th and 21st, and April 4th and 18th.
The Families Night Out group meets Wednesdays from 5pm – 7pm on February 1st and 15th, March 1st, 15th, and 29th, April 12th, 19th, and 26th.
Lastly, the Teen Scene group will be meeting on Fridays from 5pm – 7pm on February 10th and 24st, March 10th and 24th, and April 14th, 21st, and 28th.
The Oak Park Farmer’s Market is a big part of the Sacramento community. This was their last event for the season. Let check up on them to see what they been up to!
The Yisrael Family Farm is preparing to host their 3rd annual Urban Farm to Fork event on Sunday, October 16th starting 3PM and going until 6PM at 4505 Roosevelt Avenue, Sacramento. For those of you unfamiliar with the Yisrael family farm, it is a local urban farm right in the backyard of Chanowk Yisrael and his family’s home. Over the years, Chanowk and his wife have made several events and workshops in order to inform and to educate local Sacramento community members about the greatness of growing your own food and why organic and natural food is great. “Transforming the hood for good” is their motto, and it fits just nicely as they are located within a suburban local Sacramento neighborhood.
Chanowk has just recently returned from a trip in Italy after meeting their President and is now ready to continue his work back here at home within Sacramento. The Urban Farm to Fork event will offer 5-course meals, a farm tour, and entertainment. Their Facebook event page reads, “Sacramento sits among 1.5 million acres of farms and ranches that grow more than 120 crops for markets here and abroad yet South Oak Park is considered a ‘Food Desert’ meaning local residents do not have access to fresh local food.” With that in mind, it’s absurd to think about how people and families could be growing and sharing their own food for the benefit of themselves and others. Not only that, but to also bring more food culture and variety among the Sacramento community is also a great ideal to shoot towards and is one of the reasons why Chanowk continues to do his work.
If you’re interested in Urban Farm to Fork, visit the event page here and get your tickets while they last. Otherwise, you should also keep up with their future events and information by visiting their website here.
Eating healthy is something that many Americans have struggled with. At the Farm to Fork Festival in the heart of California, everyone is welcomed with open arms. There are opportunities to eat healthier at every step and this festival shows people how to do it.
The Oak Park Farmers Market is held every Saturday from 9AM – 1PM at McClatchy Park through October. Check out their farm-to-fork quality food options, as well as the live entertainment and cooking demonstrations before the program ends for this year.
Sacramento is considered by many to be the Farm-to-Fork capital of America, so it only makes sense that the next generation of Sacramentans carries the urban agriculture torch.
One organization working to make that happen is Oak Park Sol, whose mission is to “co-create with local residents vibrant and productive green places such as community gardens, and other community-managed open spaces.” Oak Park Sol will be holding free, family friendly cooking classes throughout the summer.
Though many local organizations are working to promote more gardens around the capital city, growing the food is only half the story. The other half is eating that food, which is where groups like Oak Park Sol come in. Their outdoor kitchen at 3733 Broadway will be the meeting place for this free event, with the Food Literacy Center leading the classes.
“[We will] have the entire family out to the garden for fun-filled hour of Food Literacy to inspire the youth to eat their veggies,” says Oak Park Sol.
Aside from the cooking and nutrition classes being taught, attendees will walk away with vouchers to the Oak Park Farmer’s Market, offers a variety of fruits, vegetables, flowers, cheeses, and more.
Space is limited for this event and registration is required. If this event is full there will be two free cooking events from Oak Park Sol this month: one on June 13th at 9:30am and the next on June 22nd at 6:30pm.
Anyone looking for a fun, family friendly, educational activity is encouraged to check out Oak Park Sol’s cooking classes, led by the Food Literacy Center.
To register for this event, email Randy Stannard or call (530) 204-8082
As many California citizens know, our state is widely known as being one of the best agricultural sites in the nation. According to the USDA’s crop statistics for 2013, California was the top selling agriculture states in the nation, with its farms earning $46.4 billion in revenue. More than a third of America’s vegetables and two thirds of its fruits and nuts were farmed in our beloved Golden State.
These astounding numbers have brought up a daunting question: Why, in an agriculturally buzzing state, are there so many hungry people?
Sacramento citizens will be discussing this question and many more at the second ‘Hunger in the Farm-to-Fork Capital’ event of the year.
Hunger in the Farm-to-Fork Capital is a community discussion designed to decipher the reasons behind Sacramento’s hunger issue and how to solve it. The conversation is sponsored by Capital Public Radio and Village Square in association with many non-profit organizations set on improving life in our community.
“I think that there are a number of ways,” said Community Engagement Specialist Jessica Maria Ross in a podcast with Capital Public Radio when asked how we as a city should go about reducing the number of hungry people in California. “But the first one that I think is most important is by creating spaces and processes for people with diverse perspectives to come together and share their experiences, personal stories, and make some meaning of it…”
Though the event is free, it requires pre-registration, as seats fill up quickly. Everyone is welcome to join the conversation, enjoy appetizers, and listen to real radio broadcasts of people dealing with hunger and poverty. The event will be held at the Clunie Community Center on June 3rd. Doors open at 5:00 pm.
To get more information about the event, you can contact Tara Thronson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To view California’s agricultural crop statistic for the year 2013, you can go here.
If you would like to see Capital Public Radio’s documentary “Hidden Hunger”, or simply get some more insight concerning their goals with eliminating hunger in Sacramento, you can view their website here.