Things at Saul have changed quite a bit, with the warming temperature they are now working outside! This is an exciting time for the students because it gives them an opportunity to be hands-on, which is vital to Saul. Saul has partnered up with the Eat.Right.Philly program in an effort to get fresh veggies in the hands of students and community members. The students began the program by getting an introduction to nutrition and the importance of eating quality foods. The project’s first step involved planting vegetables like red leaf, rhubarb, and many more. In the middle of planting and mulching, I talked to the students about how their parents use vegetables and what are some of their favorite vegetables. Mulan, currently a senior, spoke on why some of her favorite veggies are those with varying colors. “I just like the colors on the lettuce that have the deep red”. We spoke about the beauty that can be seen in the foods we eat, even if the taste isn’t always great… at least it’s great to look at!
The following week the students got together with Henry Got Crops member, Ainhoa, and Eat.Right.Philly member, Danielle. During this meeting, they spoke about the logistics of distributing the produce to students and community members. They planned out picking, washing, packaging, and displaying the produce that was harvested. The creative students opted to work on sign designs, while most of the guys volunteered to do the cleaning and packaging. It was amazing seeing the students work through issues of time management and address issues of lack of student engagement.
One of the tasks that Danielle assigned the students was to create an educational flyer that would attract more students to the veggie giveaway. They talked about the issues or problems they face when eating vegetables at home. They agreed that a major issue is that most students and parents don’t know what to do with less common household items like cabbage, bok choy, and butter lettuce. To combat this, they thought it would be great to attach simple recipes to each item to encourage those unfamiliar with the produce. The ultimate plan is to give away the produce on the weekend and to invite students and their parents to come and do a little grocery shopping!