Community is at the heart of everything we’ve been working on this summer and our site visits are the time we get to really engage with all of the amazing people living and working in Greensboro. Over the last few weeks, we’ve had some wonderful opportunities to get to work alongside different community members and learn about the work they’ve been doing and continue to do regarding food justice and food sovereignty. Through working with and learning from members of the community, we’re able to better understand the common threads and causes that connect us all to one another.
The most incredible thing about getting to work with so many different members of a community is that we get to see the ways people approach what matters to them. The focus of dedicated individuals working passionately on projects that mean something to them and those around them and the ways their work connects to those alongside them is a really unique and inspiring thing to witness. We’ve gotten chances to work alongside members of the Sunflower Center, Prince of Peace, Every Campus A Refuge, and many others. The ways in which all of their work differs as well as intertwines helps create a rich community-based food system.
At Prince of Peace, we got to see an excellent example of a place of faith embracing the needs and ideas of their community in a concrete and effective way. Through their construction of garden beds, they offer a place for community members to both feel connected to creation through gardening as well as feed and sustain themselves and others. We had the opportunity to help clean up the walking labyrinth at Prince of Peace which was another beautiful example they had of focusing on the need for a connection to the natural world as well as the communities desires. The proximity of both of these projects to the church itself also adds to the feeling of community growth, as it’s clear that Prince of Peace is both a place of worship and worshipful action. Getting to see a place of faith so closely engaged with bettering the local food system was really inspiring, and really sets an example for ways Quaker Meetings could engage with these ideas.
Working with The Sunflower Center was another excellent experience that really shifted the way we looked at how community members can work to affect change. The Sunflower Center offers a place not only for food for those in need but an educational and community space where people can learn skills for themselves and pitch in to help feed the community as well. Our morning there was transformative and getting to see such an intentional space that focused not only on food sovereignty but also on community growth and acceptance was inspiring. Spaces like The Sunflower Center really show how the actions and decisions by those who feel lead can grow to have a huge impact and can start truly anywhere. These experiences and others we’ve had reveal the power of community work and the dedication of individuals who genuinely care about the well-being and happiness of those around them. To engage with your community is to strengthen not only the bonds and love between one another but also to grow and change yourself in beautiful ways. Our communities are only as vibrant and strong as the members of them.
(Weeding with a local kitty at The Sunflower Center!)
(Jake and Elijah start the digging of a new garden for a refugee family!)
(Freshly dug and planted!)
See you next week with more veggie tales to tell!
-Jake and Amelia