As we start the new year (how is it 2020?!), we wanted to take a moment to introduce ourselves and to share why the work that we do is so important to the team behind the programs at HDFFA:
Katrina Van Dis, Executive Director
I had a vision when I was young of helping my parents, the farmers, and migrant farm workers have a better life while working on the farm. Growing up I did everything on the farm: move rocks, plant trees, put up canvas tents to house farm workers, converse in Spanish, drive the truck and tractor, sell cherries on the side of the road, market to grocery stores, harvest, preserve, the list goes on. I saw the struggles and joys of farming. But what resonated the most was the good food and shared experience of mixing cultures for two weeks of the year. I want to make good food accessible to anyone. I want to honor those that grow, harvest, and provide our food.
Hannah Brzozowski, VeggieRx Director
Food is so very intimate. Local food means not only sourcing locally; for me it implies connecting with each other through really delicious, nourishing, creative, and special ways via food.
Carrie Mack, Community Engagement Manager
So much of how we experience the world is through the lens of food. Food as fuel. Food as comfort. Food as ritual. Food as celebration. Food as adventure. The moments created around sharing food are such an important part of our story. Local food allows us to connect to our community and experience the places and spaces we visit and call home in a more meaningful and personal way. When we choose to eat local food, I think we are able to honor a greater part of that story.
Laurie Wayne, Farm Support Program Coordinator
For me, local food is like one of those “You Are Here” signs: it orients me. It’s food you know: you have a mental image of the people who grew it and the watershed or landscape that produced it, and you know how it fits in to the rest of the picture of the whole world. When I eat local food, it makes me feel like I am part of a place. It helps me feel at home.
Chantel Welch, Program Director
I love seeing how local foods can represent the culture of a community. I had the pleasure of living in Tucson for a few years and saw how foods really drove the community (it’s a UNESCO City of Gastronomy!), and how local chefs were striving to incorporate the local bounty as much as possible – you can learn a lot about the region just by dining out. Local foods can embody the people who grow, harvest, process, and eat them.