Monday, September 14, 2009

advisory counsil meeting--"Garden & Farm"

Notes from the advisory meeting held September 13, 2009.

I facilitated the “Garden & Farm” breakout group. We had three questions: 1. What are some suggestions to get the community involved in our gardens? 2. If East Nashville food security is out goal (availability of, access to, healthy use of whole foods), then how should we most effectively use the Antioch Farm? And 3. Who should we be collaborating with to better out impact and improve our effectiveness?

For question one the group of five (not including myself) offered ideas on how to partner with churches, schools, and people needing community service. They also included ideas of employing folks. Perhaps the overarching theme around this question was the need for community member ownership over a garden space.

The second question was addressed with an equal amount of insight. We discussed Antioch being used for field trips by those we are working with/consulting in our east Nashville neighborhood—a hub for further consultation of those in the neighborhood and also the broader Nashville growing community.

It was stressed that Antioch be a place of dignified work. Meaning Antioch could be a place for micro enterprises, like canning or cheese making.

Further, diversification of distribution was discussed. The produce could go to supporting a mobile subsidized market, a traditional farmers market, donated to the co-op, and consumed by the growers.

The conversation on the first two questions ran long, and the third question went unaddressed. However, Jason Atkins offered a list he generated during the debriefing segment. The list is compiled of mainly larger entities (international, national, and some large local organizations like universities).

(please post comments on these questions. the conversation does not have to end at the conclusion of the meeting!)

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