(By Ashley Chesser, Executive Director)
As fruit tree blossoms emerge and daylight lingers into the evening, I take comfort in the reliability of the natural world in a time of uncertainty. I prepare my garden beds and inventory my seeds for the upcoming growing season.
Spending time in my yard, I am reminded of the victory gardens during World War I. A severe food crisis emerged in Europe as agricultural workers were recruited into military service and farms were transformed into battlefields. As a result, the burden of feeding millions of starving people fell to the United States. Americans were encouraged to contribute to the war effort by planting, harvesting and storing their own fruits and vegetables so that more food could be exported to our allies. Thrift campaigns were also encouraged, and people lived with less so that what we had could be shared.
We have an opportunity to model this same spirit of kinship, ingenuity and sacrifice in today’s crisis. And every day, stories emerge about people who, in the face of uncertainty, are doing just that.
People are delivering groceries for vulnerable members in their community, doctors and care providers are dancing to keep spirits high in hospitals, educators are offering free online lessons for kids, and people are spending more time in nature, seeing the results of less pollution in the air and water.
NCAP is grateful for the farmers and farmworkers in the fields ensuring we have food for the future, the health care workers on the front lines, the grocery store clerks and many others working essential services. And we are grateful for you, our members, partners and supporters, who continue to inspire us, even in the face of hardship.