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  • The Ties that Bind and Divide Us

    Published July 30, 2014

    One thing I have learned in my year in the Boston Young Adult Volunteer program is that food is a great equalizer. 

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    From Food and Faith

  • World Day Against Trafficking in Persons

    Published July 30, 2014

    Today marks the first World Day Against Trafficking in Persons. The UN Office on Drugs and Crime, the leader within the UN System on human trafficking issues is asking people around the world to join them by taking action.

    Here’s how:

    You can also join efforts of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)’s Human Trafficking Roundtable. The Human Trafficking Roundtable is made up from a variety of programs within the Church, all working to eliminate trafficking. You can learn more about the work that each office is doing by clicking here. From fair food, protecting children from commercial ...

    Full Story

    From Swords into plowshares

  • Abundance in the City

    Published July 30, 2014

    Interview with Rev. Karen Hagen, pastor of Tippecanoe Presbyterian Church in Milwaukee, Wisconsin about their new Rooftop Garden

    You've had a community garden going for a few years now, but tell us about this new initiative.

    Our Rooftop Garden has been completed and is growing with harvest coming.  Education around the gardens has included the Webinar, local newspaper, garden blessing, and upcoming canning and food use in Divine Intervention’s food programing.  We are participating in our synod’s program as well.

    How did you do it?

    Approximately 14 volunteers worked on the Rooftop Garden installation, approximately 20 are working in our other gardens and maintain Rooftop Garden.  Primary responsibility for garden care falls upon our Garden Keepers who are homeless and formerly homeless Guests of our Divine Intervention Ministry.  Already we have approximately 100 lbs. of organic produce given away.  We have developed relationships with 4 funders, 2 restaurants interested in produce grown locally, and 1 local greenhouse that will help us look forward to next enhancements.

    Anything surprising happen?

    More volunteers than anticipated and a deepening relationship with our neighborhood! One of the unexpected challenges came in relying on one of our partners to coordinate different aspects of the installation of Rooftop Garden.  As we move to next aspects of our gardens, we will be proactive in taking on this role ourselves.

    Do you have any recommendations for others that may want to try something similar?
    Partnerships are key not only in accomplishing but maintaining the gardens.  Continually inviting new people to become involved is important to maintain support as key volunteers may need to limit or change their volunteerism with project.  Think forward!

    Has this project changed your church or community in any way?

    Yes!  It has allowed us to see what is possible as we stay faithful to our vision and think and partner creatively.  And, quite unexpectedly, new attention from the greater community is coming toward Tippecanoe in support and visitors to worship.

    Here is the newspaper article about the initiative:

    Two Milwaukee churches growing food & jobs

    Full Story

    From Food and Faith

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