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from the fields

The Food Project's blog

Refugees Share Culture in Dudley Greenhouse

TFP staff Jennie Msall works with BCRHHR members.
TFP staff Jennie Msall works with BCRHHR members.
Each Friday, a group of refugees and clinicians from the Boston Center for Refugee Health and Human Rights (BCRHHR) meet at the Boston Medical Center and walk the mile to the Dudley Greenhouse together. At the greenhouse, they are welcomed by TFP staffers Jennie Msall and Danielle Andrews, who lead them into the community bay, where they have been hard at work all winter. Soon, they sink their hands into the dirt and settle into the work of cultivating their three raised-bed gardens, in which they grow a variety of vegetables, including plants from their home countries. As they tend their crops, the refugees discuss their lives in Boston, methods for growing food in small spaces, and what they cook and eat here in Boston and in their home countries.

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“Eat Well” Features Somali Cuisine

Eat Well: Somali Cuisine
Eat Well: Somali Cuisine
The Food Project invites you to learn about Somali cuisine with Fadumo Kheire, who will present the second session in our “Eat Well” series of workshops. Fadumo is a community gardener with RIAC, one of nine groups working in the community bays in the Dudley Greenhouse. She will lead us in preparing two Somali dishes.

Eat Well: Connecting to gardens through culture and cooking
Cooking with Your Neighbor - Somali Cuisine
* Saturday, February 25, 12 - 1:30 p.m., RSVP REQUIRED

Download a flyer for more information.

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Donate Goods by GivingSomeThing!

GivingSomeThing
GivingSomeThing
Are you interested in donating real goods that The Food Project can use to run our youth development, sustainable agriculture, and community food access programs? Now you can! Check out our Wish List on GivingSomeThing.com!

GivingSomeThing is an online platform that connects nonprofit organizations directly to their donors. Through GivingSomeThing, supporters can easily donate real goods to their favorite organizations. Nonprofits create Wish Lists featuring specific items that will help them operate. Supporters can then view the Wish Lists, learn about how the goods will be used, and choose specific items to donate. Donated goods are shipped directly to the organization so they can be put to use immediately!

Please consider sending us goods that we need through our GivingSomeThing Wish List! You can view The Food Project’s Wish List at http://givingsomething.com/The-Food-Project.

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Local Gardener Leads Cooking Workshop

Maria Barros prepares bacalhau.
Maria Barros prepares bacalhau.
Local gardener Maria Barros led friends, neighbors, and food enthusiasts in a cooking class about Cape Verdean cooking at The Food Project’s office this Saturday, January 28.

The ten participants included Cape Verdean Bostonians eager to learn about their traditional cuisine, as well as many local gardeners. As they chopped vegetables for the class, the gardeners discussed last year's cabbage crop and their excitement to plant collard greens for the spring.

Barros led participants in preparing two traditional Cape Verdean dishes called Cachupa and Bacalhau. Cachupa is a stew that contains collard greens, beans, and corn. Bacalhau is a stew containing salted cod. After preparing the two dishes, participants dined together to taste their creations.

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Thriller Author Partners with TFP

The following blog was guest-authored by Michael Palmer, who is partnering with TFP to spread the message about real food to new audiences.

Why TFP Has a Place in This Thriller Author’s Heart

Oath of Office
Oath of Office
Greetings from Swampscott, Mass. My name is Michael Palmer, I am a NY Times best-selling medical thriller author. A little over two years ago I watched Food, Inc. I know that many of you are familiar with the sobering realities exposed in this documentary: the business of corporate farming, the harmful treatment of animals, and the limited access many people have to healthy food.

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Dedicated Teachers Make a Difference

Since October, six volunteers from the Northeastern University Civic Engagement Program have been volunteering their time each week with The Food Project as part of the Food Literacy Team. Every week, they visit the Dorchester and Gertrude E. Townsend Head Start centers to teach the children where their food comes from and how plants grow, encouraging them to be excited about eating vegetables and fruits. What follows is the first of a series of blogs to be written by members of the Food Literacy Team, by Caitlyn Fischman. She reflects on her experience volunteering at the Gertrude E. Townsend Head Start:

It has been a really long time since I have felt passionate about a cause. I feel it is important to educate kids about safe and healthy food choices when they are young, so I chose to volunteer with The Food Project.

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New TFP Workshop Series Starting Soon

Coming up soon at The Food Project, we’ll be presenting our new “Grow Well, Eat Well, Be Well” workshop series. In these sessions, we will explore gardening topics, share cultural recipes, connect you with other gardeners from your neighborhood, and more. These workshops are the beginnings of some exciting new opportunities coming up – you won’t want to miss them!

Grow Well: Bringing your gardening skills to a new level
Planning Your Garden
* Saturday, January 21, 10:00 – 11:30 A.M. OR
* Tuesday, January 24, 6:00 – 7:30 P.M.

This is the first workshop in our Grow Well series. Through this interactive workshop on designing your garden, you can get help with everything from planning its layout to ordering seeds. Other topics in this series will include: how to start seeds, planting tips, and how to dealing with pests and diseases.

Download a flyer for more information.

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A Project That Became a Movement: 20 Years


This fall, The Food Project begins commemorating our first 20 years of creating “a thoughtful and productive community of youth and adults from diverse backgrounds who work together to build a sustainable food system.” In the coming year, through newsletters, events, and on our website, we’ll be featuring profiles of the people – alumni of youth programs and former staff and board members – who helped make The Food Project what it is today.

We’ll also continue looking at our present and future work . From our origins as a project of Drumlin Farm in Lincoln, Mass., we’ve grown into a national leader, unique in our innovative work to integrate youth development with sustainable farming. With 20 years of learning and growing under our belt, we stand poised to push the movement further to make real food – food that is nourishing to consumers, producers, and the environment – a reality for everyone, in Eastern Massachusetts and beyond.

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Scenes from Thanksgiving Farmers' Market

DIRT Assistant Crew Leader Anna leads neighborhood children in drawing activity.
DIRT Assistant Crew Leader Anna leads neighborhood children in drawing activity.
The Food Project’s November Market took place in our Dudley Greenhouse in Roxbury on Tuesday, November 22. From 4 to 7 p.m., friends and neighbors came to the greenhouse to buy a variety of root vegetables and greens to enrich their Thanksgiving dinners and to store away for colder days.

Along with the last field vegetables of the year, TFP youth handed out samples of their own Butternut squash soup with croutons, prepared specially for the event. While adults shopped for vegetables, other TFP youth interns led children in special activities around the greenhouse, such as a vegetable scavenger hunt, a potato digging bonanza, herb taste testing, and a lively game of pin the tail feather on the turkey.

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Food Literacy Team launched



This fall, The Food Project is partnering with Action for Boston Community Development (ABCD) and Northeastern University to pilot a new program called the Food Literacy Team. On weekday mornings during the 2011-2012 school year, TFP volunteers will be visiting the classrooms of the Dorchester and Gertrude E. Townsend Head Start centers in Dorchester to engage preschool students in food literacy and nutrition lessons.

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