Written By: Tinia Pina
On Saturday, April 25th, Re-Nuble partnered with Cultivate the City, a social enterprise in the District of Columbia that works to catalyze change in a broken food system, while helping beautify and enrich our urban landscape. Our mission strongly aligns with their goals to increase opportunities for communities to become more prosperous and sustainable by producing their own food as well as creating economic opportunities for individuals to become urban farmers and make a living wage. The Founder, Niraj, and I have been close friends for a while and it has been incredibly humbling and exciting to see the development of both of our social enterprises.
We spent an afternoon hosting a workshop at the JO Wilson Elementary School in DC where one of Cultivate the City's projects is located, teaching DC residents how to grow herbs from the convenience of their kitchen countertops, balconies and/or community gardens. What I've found over the years is that everyone is interested in growing their own food and will often do so by taking that first step in purchasing the seedlings from a local gardening center but the maintenance "know-how" required of taking care of their beloved new plants is minimal. Most will bring their new plants home and water it but lack the understanding in how to provide sufficient sunlight, nutrients, and water in order to cultivate productive plants that continue to give love by producing food. Therefore, the workshop not only equipped our guests with new herbs to bring home, created a space to educate them how to care for them at home throughout the year, while enlightening them with information to understand why nutrients are so important, how tower garden systems work, and how their transferred or 'lost' to various parts of the plant post harvest and during distribution (which is why the concept of food miles is so important).
Look for our next blog article where we dive deeper into the importance of local food production and nutrition. For those that enjoy data and research driven content this is an article to watch for.
Natalie Taggart, wrote an incredible blog post conveying her personal connection with food established after attending our workshop. It's certainly worth a read!