The co-founders of the Provision Room invited local faith leaders to a farm-to-table dinner for Food Revolution Day, May 19, to discuss the importance of “real” food and the need for churches to be included in providing sustainable nutrition.
“The Provision Room is a website started by Kristina Evans and myself,” said co-founder Daja Gombojav. “It started back in December to get our families prepared for life’s happenings. Not just emergencies, not just the end of the world, but also being prepared for anything from an illness to someone being out of work to a neighbor who needs a hand.”
Evans said the blog was to “start educating people [on] eating healthy, feeding our families real food and being prepared for life’s happenings.”
Evans and Gombojav focused on the issue of food security. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, 14.5% of households in 2010 were food insecure at least some part of the year.
“So we realized there’s a lot we need to do to raise awareness about real food, about sustainable practices, a food supply that’s safe and good for all of us,” Gombojav said.
Evans and Gombojav provided ideas of ways the churches could get involved. One was a 30-day fast food challenge when people give up fast food for 30 days.
“It’s an opportunity to create a conversation,” Evans said. She added the local community could ask, “How bad can 30 days be?”
The co-founders also encouraged the churches to create a community garden or even ask members of their congregation if they would mind if someone created a garden on their property. Evans has a garden at her home where she grows food for her own family.
Evans and Gombojav also suggested that the churches could hold a fruit and vegetable exchange. This way families who have extra fruit and vegetables could share their extras with the congregation and people who are hungry so no food went to waste.
“For tonight, we’d like to bring awareness especially to our local churches and church families,” Evans said. “The church, being so integrated in the community, has a unique position to get the word out about sustainable food, about feeding families well.”
“I feel like the church is an important key,” Gombojav said. “Because the church is already so active in the community, they really have the pulse on where the need is. So that’s why we are gathering people to engage more fully in the conversation and come up with creative solutions.”
Evans and Gombojav encouraged church leaders to buy local coffee and buy biodegradable cups and use real dishes. They also asked the pastors to preach a series on taking care of the land. Finally they asked the leaders to start a group to go to the farmer’s market together, led by someone who knows what to purchase. After the farmer’s market, the congregation could go to a picnic.
“I’m a total believer of organic, sustainable and really educating the family and the individual about utilizing our yard and purchasing food. I think it’s great,” said Katherena Higashi, a member of a local church who attended the event.
“I was raised on a farm in Iowa and so the things they are trying to do [are] what I experienced growing up,” said Deborah Malouff who attends Hrock Church. “I love it and I think it’s the way we are meant to live and eat.”
All of the food at the dinner came from farms and food artisans within 100 miles. These artisans included Gunnar & Jakes Gourmet Foods, Farm Fresh Herbs, Leonardo e Roberto’s Gourmet Blends, Novy Ranches Grass-Fed Angus Beef and Cutie Pie That are also at the Saturday La Cañada farmer’s market on Foothill Boulevard.
To learn more, visit the Provision Room’s website http://theprovisionroom.com/.