Friday, December 3, 2010

Connections Between People and Nourishment

Winter comes early in northeastern Vermont.

By Halloween, the air is so cool that costumes are graced with heavy jackets and mittens, impeding the eager hands that dig into coffers of candy. Thanksgiving tables are heavy with their burdens of food as the acrid smell of smoke from wood stoves fill the air and as we approach the Winter Solstice, there is often snow on the ground and dents in our root cellar inventory, as greens or fruit are harder to come by.

Winter comes early for those who are food insecure and hungry.

I am fortunate to be in a position where I do not have to choose between feeding my family or heating our house. For this reason, the frost on the windows while I wander the aisles of my local market, bring to mind the difficulty of those who are food insecure or hungry in Vermont. Cold temperatures slam into a wall of skyrocketing heating prices and this means those who are food insecure often struggle with two basic necessities to sustain human life. Although we are fortunate to have a network of organizations that work hard to fill in the gaps of food access for our population, it is one that needs support.

In a region where an abundance of food seems to be everywhere, we are well aware that many of our neighbors struggle to feed themselves. In a community blessed not only with farmers, but with artists, writers and poets, we are fortunate that so many care deeply for their fellow human.

Julia Shipley, a poet and writer, emailed yesterday as we prepared for tonight's Local Author Event & Benefit and she sums up the purpose of tonight beautifully.

"I think that freelance writers and sustainable ag. farmers have a lot in common in that they are both purveyors of nutrition--one feeds minds, one feeds bodies, both hope, through their practices, to nourish souls as well. In addition to raising funds, awareness and donations for the Food Pantry, I hope this helps folks recognize the connection between agriculture and culture. Maybe this event can be seen as experiment (a test drive) for building and strengthening more connections between people and nourishment throughout the area."

We hope to see you tonight!

Local Author Event & Benefit
with Caroline Abels, Bethany Dunbar, Ben Hewitt and Julia Shipley

St. John's Episcopal Church
39th West Church St
Hardwick, Vermont

Donations accepted for the Hardwick Area Food Pantry and the CAE's Food Access Fund

Contact Elena Gustavson with any questions.