|Posted by ny2no on July 4, 2010 at 1:14 AM|
It is Day 6 here in New Orleans and I am spellbound by all that I have experienced here, especially in the debriefs. Over the course of the past week we have worked here with Our School at Blair Grocery (OSBG). Being a native New Yorker, this experience thus far has definitely persuaded me to change my eating patterns and to be appreciative of what I have back at home.
Today’s workshop was the top seller (at least to me) education-wise. Today’s was about the WIDE gap between adults and youth. Growing up in New York and given all my opportunities, I have not experienced any form of discrimination, but rather a welcoming agenda. This workshop consisted of selected youth, one being me, discussing the gap between generations in front of the entire NY2NO group. Then we switched it up and had staff here from OSBG talk about working with youth. This was an amazing opportunity to see and hear from different perspectives about the gap between us. I spoke of my amazing experiences in New York and how they have helped constructed the person who I am. I have always had a fear of becoming an adult, I felt that there would be no more security and no one to guide me into my future. But the staff here at OSBG spoke about how GOOD it felt to no longer suffer from insecurities and finding out who you are. Once entering adulthood you have a different perspective and I have dreaded experiencing that perspective until today.
Earlier in the week we have been doing a ton of work here at OSBG. My favorite activity is composting, which consists of the most physical labor, and my least favorite is harvesting sprouts, mostly because I am not good at cutting the sprouts at the roots. Compost consists of us throwing a ton of food waste from local groceries and Whole Foods onto a mountain of debree, (soil and wood chips) covering it with coffee beans and then covering that whole set up with wood chips. This activity is the most fun of all because it promotes a greener lifestyle by replenishing nutrients in the soil to continue to grow nutriuous, organic foods here. I also find this fun because of the team work. There are so many ways to do it. Everyone can do the same task or we can do an assembly line. Although there is a ton of shoveling and other physical labor, it makes me the feel the most satisying because it feels as if I am leaving a mark here in New Orleans to help the citizens of the Lower Ninth Ward have a good meal to eat and good soil to grow in.
I am excited for this overall experience. In my head I constantly think about coming again (if my funds were to allow that.) Before I came here, everyone I spoke to said I was coming here to help with the oil spill. Little do they know that Hurricane Katrina has still left an impact on others lives. The storm that happened five years ago has still left people in a state of shock, especially those that come out here to volunteer with organizations such as NY2NO. We are off to the Village of Tangipahoa up north and will be working on farms. I have never done work like that in my life and it will all be documented in my video diary which I am doing mainly for my funders. This experience I’d say has changed me for the better. Minor things (such as my eczema outbreak) usually stop me from focusing on my main purpose out here, but I got to continue to have my eye on the prize and that’s to make a change here. Two weeks is not a long time. But it is indeed time and it’s precious! I am going to make the most of these final 8 days toward a better New Orleans.
Categories: Food Justice Summer 2010