Food Justice Movement
Petition to Strategic Acquistions Inc, Peter Baer (Founder & President Strategic Acquisitions Inc), Tony Hershman (Chief Operating Officer Strategic Acquisitions Inc)
DO NOT ALLOW STRATEGIC ACQUISITIONS INC TO DESTROY THE RON FINLEY PROJECT’S GANGSTA GARDEN
Help #savethegangstagarden and The Ron Finley Project's HQ that ignited a worldwide food justice revolution by signing the petition and generously giving what you can.All Ron Finley wanted was healthy food for himself, his family and neighbors. After picking up a tomato that was labeled “coated with shellac” in his local South Central Los Angeles grocery store, it hit Finley: there was a complete lack of healthy food in his community. This is true for not only Finley’s community, but most underserved populations nationwide. More than 29 million Americans live in food deserts or what Finley has termed “food prisons”.“the drive-thrus are killing more people than the drive-bys”In 2010, Finley decided to take his health and the health of his community into his own hands and “Plant Some Shit”, turning a strip of city-owned land in front of his property into a food oasis. After a citation, fine and eventual warrant for Finley’s arrest over the grass that he transformed into an edible landscape for his community, word spread quickly about the “Gangsta Gardener”, sparking a global food justice movement. Luminaries such as René Redzepi, Russell Brand, Alice Waters, Rainn Wilson, Penny Marshall, Aloe Blacc, Carson Daley, Rachel Hunter and Robert Horry reached out to Finley in solidarity of his work, followed by statewide dignitaries, namely Mayors Aja Brown, Kevin Johnson and Councilman Herb Wesson. Soon after, the Gangsta Garden began to be visited and studied by local K-12 classrooms and universities all over the world including renown institutions such as Harvard, the University of Southern California and MIT.“Kids who grow kale, eat kale. If they grow tomatoes, they eat tomatoes. But when none of this is presented to them, they blindly eat whatever you put in front of them.”Over the last few years, the owner of the RFP property has been battling with the bank and has made several attempts to receive a loan modification to no avail. The bank recently foreclosed on the property and sold it to Strategic Acquisitions Inc. RFP has requested that Strategic Acquisitions allow them to continue operating from the location as to sustain with the important work they are doing in the community. The only solution they have been offered is to purchase the property, otherwise, face eviction. HQ has grown into more than just a garden since 2010, including RFP offices, an educational center and a propagation station for more edible urban landscapes. The loss of this property is a continuation of the injustices perpetrated against the members of the South Central Los Angeles community and persons struggling with food insecurity around the world. Finley took on city lawmakers in 2010 sparking a worldwide food justice revolution. Now the world needs to rally behind him!RFP needs to raise $500,000 to #savethegangstagarden that has become a symbol of healthy change for Los Angeles and cities all over. If you have been touched by RFP or support access to healthy food for ALL communities, please sign the petition, donate on our crowdfunding site, share and comment on how the The Ron Finley Project has inspired you.
Petition to The National Board of Trustees for Youth for Christ
FOOD JUSTICE For TILLICUM Keep Our TREEhouse Growing and TREE Community Garden
Food is the next frontier of the civil rights movement!! EQUITY STARTS HERE - FIGHT FOR FOOD, SOCIAL, EDUCATION, ECONOMIC AND ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE With TREEhouse - NOW! WE NEED AND WANT TREE'S LEASE RENEWED I writing to you with a sincere appeal to support the TREEhouse…Growing…Eating…Living and TREE, a small grassroots edible education – early learning - community engagement- social justice agent of change non-profit, in the South Sound of Washington – Pierce County – Lakewood – Tillicum outside the gates of Joint Base Lewis – McChord. TREE has been through major challenges in our five seasons with lots of prayers, grit, determination, joy, success and transformation in a community that has been plagued by all the urban pitfalls – isolation, disinvestment, poverty, crime, drugs, gangs but that is NOT what TREE sees in the future. TREE’s VISION is TRANSFORMATION – a resilient, thriving, engaged, growing, self-sufficient, local food system through community gardens for health and wellness for its babies, children, youth, families, schools and community. “Sustainable local agriculture, national farm policy, school gardens and, most of all, childhood nutrition and health have all found common ground in the garden.” That is what TREE has learned and can testify from experience of building two garden sites in a low resourced food desert community. We have remained fluid and positive through each season letting our kiddos direct our course as any good gardener recognizes you must start with good dirt, my loving term for soil! And that is what Tillicum has!!! Not in the traditional viewpoint with all the have-not’s; no grocery store, no viable social services, no public transportation options, no above minimum wage employment or advancement opportunities, no way to see beyond just survival. But TREE recognizes potential, ability and willingness!! TREE has been a change maker!!! We understands that OUR Garden Stars will be the food ambassadors to their families, peers and community! “It will take a child to raise a village” is our motto. Changing how early learners and children experience real whole food – that it doesn’t come from McDonald’s. We have sown, grown and learned together; how it is a seed in our good dirt that is watered, nurtured and bears fruit that we can ALL enjoy!! Tillicum neighborhood into the BEST community in Pierce County by 2025!! TREEhouse...Growing...Eating...Living the high-profile presence of wealth, health, inequality and tensions in the media, mind and moral compass have made conversations on the interplay of money, race and class ever more important! These conversations are complicated and emotion-fraught but also potentially transformative. Transforming TILLICUM Is Our GOAL, our CHALLENGE our FIGHT to ADVOCATE to challenge SYSTEMS that make POVERTY a COMMODITY against the vulnerable - our babies, our early learners, our children FOOD it is the next frontier of the Civil Rights Movement!! EQUITY - food justice, social justice, educational justice, economic justice in a little tiny community of Tillicum, Pierce County, South Sound, Washington this is where we start, Join US: It's simple: healthy childhoods build healthy communities, and healthy communities build healthy childhoods. TREE believes a healthy community sets the stage for lifelong health. Each child, in each school, in each of our communities deserves to be healthy, safe, engaged, supported and challenged. That's what a whole child approach to learning, teaching and community engagement really is. But no child is raised by themselves. TREE programs keep kids safe, inspire them to learn and help working families. • Research commissioned by the Afterschool Alliance, released in 2014, finds that the number of children in the United States participating in afterschool programs are on the rise. • Demand is especially high among low-income, African American and Hispanic families. The study found that 10.2 million children (18 percent) participate in an afterschool program – an increase from 2009 (8.4 million; 15 percent) and 2004 (6.5 million; 11 percent). Nearly 1 in 4 families (23 percent) currently has a child enrolled in an afterschool program. • But economic difficulties have taken a toll on TREE's programming and operating budget this year but many programs are cutting back hours and some have been forced to close. • An unmet demand for TREE programs is also high, there are three more—who are waiting to get in. • Years of research have demonstrated that TREE programs work, and support a wide range of positive outcomes for kids, families and communities. • TREE programs help young people prepare for the future. Science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) programs offered after school and during the summer are getting young people excited about these critical fields by engaging them in hands-on explorations. Just like acquiring fluency in a language requires immersion in that language, becoming fluent in STEM requires engaging with it in lots of settings. •TREE offers an exciting way to ensure we prepare tomorrow’s workforce to create a prosperous future for our nation. • TREE programs are an effective tool in the ongoing battle against childhood obesity, parents are satisfied that the food served is healthy. •Four in five parents agree that TREE programs should offer opportunities for physical activity and 80 percent of parents with a child in TREE programs report that the program does just that. • We need lawmakers, businesses and foundations to come together to ensure that TREE programs get the funding they need to serve our children and our communities. Every parent wants the best for their children, a good education, success and a great future. The most disparate, diverse and disconnected community residents share aspirations for the best for their children. When communities make connections through and leverage the power inherent in this shared interest, they discover the means to promote additional change and build a new village. Tillicum NEEDS TREE and TREE NEEDS Tillicum!! Because where you live determines, how well you live. Where you live will often determines what kind of food you eat or if you eat. Tillicum is a barbell community of haves and have not's. Available resources are not always equally distributed to communities of color and low resource families + environments such as poverty, trauma, violence, toxins or economic disinvestment that compromise individual and community health + "park poor" + highest percent of poorest children (93% Tillicum Elementary - 77.8 Woodbrook Middle School) of Clover Park School District + 30.7% Children under 18 + 8.9% Limited English speaking + 30 % Early Learners start kindergarten unprepared + 21.9% Education K-12, 5.5% Undergraduate, .03% Undergraduate/Professional + 40.9 % Adults not in workforce.. TREE's framework provides a way to understand the relationship between community, conditions, education, wellness and health equity analysis. The connections among all the economic factors that contribute to a healthy community and identifies environmental effects on community health. TREEhouse…Growing…Eating…Living, The TREE Program, KinderGarten in the Garden, Seed to Kitchen Program knows that when families, schools and communities working together the children will be healthier in South Sound, Washington. We have seen this community make big improvements for their kids' health. BUT WHAT WOULD HAPPEN IF TREEhouse - The TREE Program could no longer grow THIS community into GREATNESS? What is TREEhouse - TREE Program's impact on Tillicum? GROWING... Self sufficiency and a Local Food System; EATING...with Cooking Together Matter teaching for Health and Wellness to families; LIVING...Building Community Wealth by investing in People unrealized Assets. Transformation has been made because of the children and family training are taken home and people get empowered and challenged to help do the work of removing the obstacles of that stand between all people and a fair and equitable food system. Tillicum was Waiting for Superman before TREE! There was NO early learners AND youth programming, NO community garden, NO summer learning program, NO health and wellness investment, NO fresh local food system, NO social connector for this forgotten community of disinvestment. Tillicum has captured our HEARTS and MINDS. Its early learners and parents are resilient and full of a hope for a bright future and TREE is there to support, inspire and build TOGETHER with families, schools and community. Now ALL is under threat of discontinuing OUR new 5th season. Our future to grow and harvest OUR good work. The landlord has chosen not to renewal our lease for the office space – our teaching, cooking and learning – and community garden site – outdoor classroom, workshop, hands – on activity and demonstration space. Food is the next frontier of the civil rights movement! TREE cannot lose OUR HOME – the impact would be devastating to a community that has lost so much! And its impact would be felt by our Garden Stars for years to come. Collaboration is the key to sustainability. We are asking for your help and support!! And stand up for EQUITY! Use our voices and power to challenge the systems that no longer work for our collective future. We gathered the support from our community members that have signed a door to door petition as well to Tacoma Youth for Christ should and must consider the significant, heart breaking impact that this decision to put money over the health and welfare of every one of its vulnerable residents, especially the babies and children. TREEhouse...Growing...Eating...Living is the ANSWER in TILLICUM and WOODBROOK!! HELP SAVE TREE!!