Erie, PA >> Albuquerque, NM
What is your role at Community Plates?
I’m the new site director here in Albuquerque!
What do you like to do in your free time?
I like to roam the bosque, ride bikes with friends, and experiment with clay plasters.
What is the biggest challenge in your community?
Sadly, New Mexico ranks highest in child hunger, and current policies are making it harder to get healthy food to hungry kids. There is so much need here, but so much abundance, too. It’s connecting the dots and building community that makes the difference.
How did you first become inspired around issues of food insecurity?
I went to school in Pittsburgh, and it was there that I really noticed some extreme disparities in neighborhood food access. Pittsburgh is also unique in that while it’s quite dense, it’s hilly and divided by rivers creating some interesting geographic barriers to folks without access to transportation. More affluent neighborhoods are brimming with restaurants and groceries, while others are lucky to have a corner store where the only option is processed food. Without a car, or the time to take multiple buses, or the ability to walk up and down the hills to get there, shopping for fresh foods is literally impossible for some people. And that doesn’t even account for the cost of food, which is prohibitive for so many regardless of geography.
Who or what inspires you most?
Oh gosh. So many people and so many things, past and present. Artists, makers, activists. In this particular moment though, I’m thinking of my parents back East, who worked real hard to raise my sister and I, and who now have the chance to work hard for themselves creating businesses that have become neighborhood mainstays. Their work has been all heart and 70+ hour weeks, and although my work keeps taking me away from home, they’ve been nothing but supportive as I carve out a similar path.
If there is one thing we should do to help eradicate food insecurity in our communities, what would it be, and how can we get involved?
Get involved with Community Plates, of course! We’ve made it so easy to plug right in and get to the meaningful work, taking food that would otherwise be wasted to folks that are hungry. It’s a great place to start to reconnect with our relationship to food and community. And from there, who knows? Hopefully wasting less, growing more, and always sharing the abundance.