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What’s Growing On? July 2020 News from Grow Southcoast

by: Adam Davenport, Grow Education Manager

The summer heat has hit us – and the gardens.  Luckily, our team is growing along with the summer crops!  We were able to welcome back Cristiano Dias for the summer as a garden manager.  He has been able to take on cultivating, planting and watering across our 7 gardens planted for this year.  Cristiano first started working with Grow as a student at New Bedford High where he helped build the garden, and then continued as an intern to plant and harvest.  Speaking Creole, Spanish, a little Portuguese and English, Cristiano has been a great resource to the neighborhoods surrounding the school gardens.

As we mentioned in a past newsletter, the Marion Institute was lucky to receive approval for two Food Corps members for the upcoming year!  These members will work with our partnered elementary schools to co-teach classroom lessons on agriculture, nutrition and healthy lifestyles, support kids to eat healthy foods in the cafeterias, and build a culture of health across the district!

We’ve confirmed one of our members and we’re excited to introduce you to her. Learn a little more about Keri below and be on the look-out for more from Keri and the Food Corps Team once they get into action!

Keri Cusson, MSW, LCSW, E-RYT

Where did you grow up?
I grew up in New Bedford, MA near Brooklawn Park, where I attended NBPS K-12.

What got you interested in food education?
My first answer to the question “What do you want to be when you grow up?” was, “A chef!” I’ve always had a passion for food and this helped me cultivate a healthy lifestyle over the past 10 years. In my work with children and families, food has always been part of the conversation and witnessing food inequities has drawn me closer to food education. Food is life and everyone deserves a happy and healthy life.

What do you hope to accomplish during your term?
I hope to accomplish strong relationships with the children and adults I will be serving.

What do you hope to gain from this experience?
I hope to gain a broader understanding of food systems and expand my network of like-minded food freedom fighters.

What’s your favorite vegetable?
My favorite vegetables are leafy greens!

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