We Are Roots for Life, and Change is Growing

 Roots for Life's Cooking and Nutrition Educator Volunteer, Ana Maria, speaks with the ladies of Hyacinth's Place about reading nutritional labels and the benefits of incorporating fresh fruits and vegetables into their diets.

Roots for Life's Cooking and Nutrition Educator Volunteer, Ana Maria, speaks with the ladies of Hyacinth's Place about reading nutritional labels and the benefits of incorporating fresh fruits and vegetables into their diets.

With each generation, the tendency to rely on fast, convenient and usually low-nutrition food rises. Even for those fortunate enough to live in communities with an abundance of resources, in today’s society it can be difficult to maintain a healthy diet. For the many communities lacking the knowledge of, and access to nutritious foods and healthy lifestyles, a poor diet is a day-to-day reality with long-term consequences.

We are Roots For Life, a social movement dedicated to educating and empowering communities to thrive by eradicating food insecurity areas known as Food Deserts.

By definition, a food desert is an impoverished area with little access to personal transportation and where the nearest supermarket or grocery store with fresh produce is more than half a mile walking distance. Food insecurity is the state of being without reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food. Typically, food deserts are dense with fast-food chains, quick marts, gas stations, local convenience stores and bodegas to get groceries instead of farmer’s markets or a grocery stores that are loaded with healthy options. According to research by the USDA in 2015, 42.2 million people lived in food-insecure households in the United States. And according to a report by the D.C Policy Center, in Washington D.C, 11% of the city’s area is considered to be a food desert. These staggering facts were concerning for volunteer co-founders, Tamara Bibby and Rhonda Watson, so they collaborated to create an organization to help the Washington, D.C. community and individuals in the community to make small incremental changes in their daily fruit and vegetable intake.

This is How We Do It!

The Roots for Life approach to filling vital needs in the community is multi-faceted. We have designed programming to (1) to connect individuals (through sustainable relationships with local farmers, farmer’s markets, and community partners) living in food deserts or living with food insecurity, to locally grown fruits and vegetables, (2) to educate the community on the nutritional value of fresh produce, and (3) to empower daily, healthy incremental change.

Through our comprehensive educational programs, our staff and a host of volunteers will work with communities in Wards 4,5, 7, and 8 and teach residents about the nutritional value of fresh produce, how to cook and grow their own food, and best ways to implement healthy lifestyle choices to promote incremental change.

Over the coming weeks, we will participate in several community food and cooking events around Washington, D.C. Several of our volunteer chefs will provide recipes, seasonal fruit and vegetable profiles, hands-on workshops and much more!

Support the Movement!

You can help our movement by volunteering, collaborating and or donating! Every minute and cent helps.

Up Next! - Join Us At the Following Events!

Art of Healthy Food

What: Cooking Demonstration
When: Wednesday, September 26
Where: Congress Heights Plaza (3109 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave, SE, Washington D.C.)
Time: 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Art All Night

What: Cooking Demonstration
When: Saturday, September 29
Where: Congress Heights Plaza (3109 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave, SE, Washington D.C.)
Time: 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.

14th & U Farmers Market

What: Cooking Demonstration
When: Saturday, September 29
Where: 14th & U Farmers Market (Reeves Center, at the corner of 14th and U Streets, NW, Washington D.C.)
Time: 11:00 a.m.