I’m so excited to share this! A few months ago, a friend connected me with an article for RELEVANT Magazine. The article was to look at food deserts and urban gardening, and I was pumped.
The more I looked at the statistics, the more this problem both made sense and frustrated me. I opened the piece talking about a corner store, and I was picturing the one just up the street from our house.
As I wrote it, I was in the middle of a local class called Building Bridges, focusing on racial reconciliation in Asheville. We’d talked about how the story of housing in Asheville is inextricably intertwined in the story of segregation and gentrification here, and as I pictured the food deserts in my own foodie town, I remembered the stories of thriving communities with walkable grocery stores being snuffed out by new developments, like the highway that runs right by our house.
So I wrote this from the heart. I held back tears talking to Ryan Koch from Seedleaf. Their vision, mission, and execution are so thoughtful and wise. I was so impressed with Safi Mahaba’s initiative at the Burton Street Community Garden – their reason for starting the garden is a beautiful example of taking ownership of your neighborhood rather than moving out if/when things aren’t to your liking. And Khann Chov at Beardsley Community Farm reminded me that teaching people can offer so much more than simply giving, but the two aren’t mutually exclusive.
I haven’t put my hands on the print magazine yet, but you can read it digitally here! And then go buy a copy to support, you know, writers and print magazines covering important issues from a faith and culture perspective.