Hi Everyone, I’m Sarana, Ra for short. This year will be my first year as a member of the Summer of Solutions team in Hartford CT. I learned about the program through another food justice organization I work for in the city called Cooking Matters. As I have just returned from Wisconsin, to my home city of Hartford, CT, I have been so inspired by the many initiatives within the city to make food scarcity, and access to healthy affordable foods a priority in our communities. My work revolves around sustainability and social justice, primarily with youth. I combine these passions by being part of initiatives that serve to empower underserved demographics of people. This has taken many faces from, teaching art with youth, to running a permaculture garden at a local community center, to teaching sexual health to young women and working as a doula for a non-profit organization. I love the many ways there are to be involved in supporting, enlivening, and contributing to the overall health of our communities. It is in fact, our natural state of being.
Food: from our personal relationship with it, to our community’s and ultimately our society’s relationship with it is the foundation for so much of our quality of life. It can literally impact entire communities for better or worse. We are seeing this now, as a nation, and globally as well. We are living outside of a natural food system, and we are seeing the impacts of it on our health and our economy.
I believe Summer of Solutions, and programs like it, are the key to re-uniting people under the common goal of caring for each other and the community. The learning, sharing of new information and ideas, and ultimately positive change that can happen is only possible when we are able to truly connect person to person. Our communities after all are built one person at a time. They are comprised of our collective unit. The more we reach out to each other, the stronger our unit.
I am excited and grateful to be a part of the Summer of Solutions team this year. I am looking forward to the challenge and joy of learning with all of the organizers and participants alike.
Best wishes for an inspiring January gathering and an abundant growing season!