The following post is an article my children and I wrote for our local paper, but it never made to publication.  I guess they are not interested in local organic sustainable news for their county… (Sigh) So, without further complaint here is the wonderful post they missed!

On Wednesday, April 24th 2013 my family and I attended a countywide discussion about our local food system in Port Orford with over 100 people in attendance. The event is called F.E.A.S.T which stands for Food, Education, Agriculture, Solutions, Together. We were happy to see a full house in attendance as people were representing their local communities from Brookings all the way up the coast. As a family we are into local and sustainable agriculture. So, we were interested to hear the voices of other communities on the subject. We listened to different speakers speak on subjects that are near and dear to their hearts.

At one point we broke off into groups and were arranged by our community interests. This provided an opportunity for great dialog in each individual’s area of interest with those who had a passion to see change in their community. My group’s dialog was focused towards community food education as it pertains to health. Alice Taylor who was a guest speaker that evening was at our table and had a lot of good feed back on the needs of under income mothers who need nutritional education. My husband had the opportunity to represent his group’s ideas in the closing session. He spoke on the importance of social networking to bring about information, education and awareness of local food and its importance to a community. Many people have not yet caught on to the importance of growing and buying food locally. So, he spoke about the internet and what an important vehicle it is for subjects like our local farmer’s market etc. My six children who are homeschooled accompanied us on the “Food field trip” and participated in the discussion groups and they even helped with running some of the equipment as well as helping with tear down when the event was done. Backwoods Home Magazine participated in the event and took a photo of our family and made mention of us on their Facebook page and they even gave us some free books from their information table. F.E.A.S.T. Curry County

We run a licensed home bakery called Compelled Bakery-A Gluten Free Bakery With a Cause that specialize in baking gluten free, sugar free and vegan baked delights. We truly have a cause.

Our baked goods feature ingredients that are sourced locally as much as possible like free range eggs, farmer’s organic produce etc. From our proceeds we take a percentage and use it to buy produce from our Wednesday Farmer’s Market, we then donate it to our local Mission to use or distribute to the hungry. We see this as a way to keep a circle of support going for our community. If every business did this we could surely impact our community for the better by providing food for the hungry and also supporting our local farmer’s at the same time.

Photo taken by: Backwoods Home Magazine for their Facebook Page

Photo taken by: Backwoods Home Magazine for their Facebook Page

F.E.A.S.T. PORTLAND just had a grand event on September 19-22 2013. We really wanted to attend, but were not able to. This event numbered in the thousands many of the ticketed events were completely sold out.  The community gathering has caught on and serves as a annual hub for those with like minds.  Food has the power to bring people together.  We must continue the dialogue pertaining to sustainability and our local food system.   Everyone should be concerned about their food source.  What I love about FEAST Portland is that is spans to more areas of interest than just sustainability, but encompasses the joy and the art of culinary passion.

At the end of the day we hope each individual who attended and attends future FEAST events will become informed enough to impact their community for the better in regards to improving their local food system by growing locally, buying locally, supporting their local food programs and utilizing social media to pass the torch so others will continue on with the task of protecting our local food system. We had our children each write a paper on the Curry County event which I will be posting soon!

What are your thoughts on community sustainability education?

© 2013, Compelled Life. All rights reserved.

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