Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Sunday, November 13, 2011
We are working to establish a safe and inviting community space through a community garden within Dover Street Park, where youth and their families can learn about nutrition and have access to fresh foods. From these immediate benefits, we hope to have deeper effects in our community, including: increased food stability for families, employment opportunities for at-risk youth; decreased incidence of diet-related disease, including obesity and related chronic conditions; and not least the knitting together of the community through joint action in creating a shared public place in which community members feel safe and welcome.
Sustainable Food Practices
Children and youth in Oakland are especially at risk of developing diet-related chronic diseases as a result of poor diets and inadequate physical activity. A staggering one-third of students in Oakland Unified School District are at risk of developing diabetes. The unprecedented risks that Oakland youth face in developing chronic diseases illustrates the need for programs that positively influence their attitudes and behaviors towards healthy eating.
- Establish a space for Healthy Hearts patients and neighbors of Children's Hospital Oakland to grow pesticide-free fresh fruits and vegetables.
- Provide educational support to patients and their families and our Surrounding community to grow their own food.
- Create interactive models that engage young people and their families in healthy eating through experiential learning.
- Engage youth affected by diet-related diseases in exercise and making healthy lifestyle choices.
- Contribute to the park's upkeep and maintenance in the face of city-wide budget cuts and maintenance staff reductions.
Creating a Welcoming Park Environment for Neighborhood Children and Adults
Oakland was the fifth most violent city in the United States in 2010, in part due to a lack of safe public spaces.
Beyond the food-related benefits outlined above, a park in which nearby residents are involved has great benefit to the involved residents and the neighborhood as a whole. It fosters feelings of stakeholding, ownership, safety, connection, and community. It is an explicit goal of this plan that through the acts of creating and utilizing the physical improvements described herein, these community benefits will be realized.
Whether parent, city council person, pediatrician, or neighbor, we all have a civic duty to respond to the need for safe public spaces and the need for healthier foods in our communities. The Dover Street Park community garden and its related activities (planting, harvesting, watering, weeding) are the fulfillment of that duty, by the neighbors of the Park. The community garden is this ideal made real, through the hard work of the community.
Neighbors want a clean, safe, inclusive place for their families. The garden has galvanized multi-generational community involvement in the park, and created many more stakeholders who want to help maintain the park as a vibrant, healthy community asset. This type of volunteer project is exactly what the city of Oakland needs in the face of drastic budgetary cutbacks. Together, we can work towards positive change with a united front.
Wednesday, November 2, 2011
Hello Dover Park friends and supporters!
I hope you are all enjoying the best weather of the year! Join us this Sunday, November 6th for the monthly Sunday workday at Dover Park. Come and enjoy more of the beautiful weather and burn off some of that Halloween candy!
This Sunday we will have a social gathering from 10 to 11 a.m. We will have coffee, tea and pastries! Bring a mug, meet your neighbors, enjoy the park and help us keep it thriving.