The Northern New Jersey Community Foundation (NNJCF) presents a timely webinar, Improving Food Security Through Gardening, on Wednesday, June 30 at 6:00 p.m. The NNJCF invites the public to watch and learn what they can do personally in their own gardens, locally, and regionally to address food insecurity. The event is open to the public and also free. Register now for this online event.
Food Security: A Serious Issue
The COVID-19 pandemic brought attention to a serious problem facing the region for some time — food security. According to the Community FoodBank of New Jersey, food insecurity grew more than 50% and increased more than 75% for children in the Garden State. As a result, people turned to gardening and growing their own food. This also highlighted another problem — food waste. According to Ample Harvest, home gardeners also waste up to 11 billion pounds of food each year.
How can individuals and communities leverage gardening to improve food security, while building closed loop food systems? A panel of regional experts in New Jersey will present their findings in the NNJCF’s webinar. Moderator Mary Blanusa, executive director of the NNJCF, will lead a question and answer session after the panel discussion.
Meet the Panel
A distinguished panel of experts will share their insights.
Bergen County Commissioner Tracy Silna Zur. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Bergen County Food Security Task Force was established. This grassroots task force coordinates food collection and distribution efforts countywide. They also connect growers with pantries to address the need for food.
Tobias A. Fox, Newark Science and Sustainability. Community drive solutions can be accomplished through community gardening and sponsored Community Supported Agriculture shares.
Melanie McDermott, Sustainable Jersey – Sustainable Jersey Actions for Green Teams. Communities can expand gardening, improve food security and also get Sustainable Jersey points.
Chantelle Walker, Greens Do Good. Year round access to fresh produce can be achieved through vertical farming, while also providing skills training and jobs to adults with autism.
Gary Oppenheimer, AmpleHarvest.org. This organization connects gardeners and food pantries to eliminate food waste and also improve food security.
Environment Focus Area
The NNJCF’s environment focus area presents this webinar. The NNJCF works with regional municipalities to encourage and facilitate their subscribing to the certification program conducted by Sustainable Jersey. The Foundation is organizing a collaborative initiative comprised of academic institutions, corporations, environmental organizations, and media groups. Furthermore, this initiative will identify, research, and implement regional projects. These projects plan to increase climate change resilience, while raising public and business awareness of the threats of global warming.
For additional information about the webinar or the NNJCF’s work, view its work online, send an e-mail , or call (201) 568-5608.