In the summer of 2003, I found myself sitting in a dingy waiting room in downtown Brooklyn. There were many other people ahead of me, all waiting to apply for food stamps or what is now called, SNAP. I remember feeling extremely embarrassed and out of sorts. After thirty minutes of sitting around, pride took over, I walked out, and fortunately have not had to return. The solution came by way of a neighbor and friend who offered to pay for groceries if I cooked for him every week. He had recently become a vegetarian and didn’t know how to prepare veggie-heavy meals. I was struggling to buy groceries and he was none the wiser. He may not even know how much this offer helped me in both the short and long term; but he will now. Thank you Dwyan for trusting me with your food and helping me realize one of my dreams, to open an eco-friendly cafe.
Fast forward to today.
Many weeks ago, I was invited to a screening of the film, A Place at the Table. While watching, I was reminded of that day in the food stamp waiting room. The film points out that forty-four MILLION people in the U.S. receive federal food assistance and many more go hungry each year. It is beautifully shot and packed with information related to the many issues being faced around the world pertaining to our basic need–feeding ourselves and our families. To me, the common denominator among the main subjects in the film is their lack of food education. My plan for WDIET is to continue to provide this type of education via books, video, photography, blogging, and workshops.
If you have children or work with them, I highly recommended watching this film or screening it in your community. Giving thanks for our ancestors, food workers, and nature for its abundance.
(Click here to watch the movie trailer – it’s available now via Netflix streaming)