A hub for cultivating connections by Jess Gerrior, Community Garden Scholar
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"Gardens, scholars say, are the first sign of commitment to a community. When people plant corn they are saying, let's stay here. And by their connection to the land, they are connected to one another." - Anne Raver
Climate of Change: Good work to share in food systems
Several Antioch University New England students, alumni, and faculty attended the New England Environmental Education Alliance conference held November 8-10 in Waterville Valley, New Hampshire. Many of the AUNE attendees also led workshops. The New England Environmental Education Alliance (NEEEA) has a 46-year history of leading, convening, and advancing environmental education in New England. This year’s conference was titled, “Climate of Change.”
AUNE is represented at NEEEA Conference by: Andrew Graham, Cynthia Espinosa Merrero, Dr. Jean Kayira, Jen Trapani (in front), Dave Chase, MEd (in back), Jess Gerrior, Dr. Libby McCann
Dr. Libby McCann and Dr. Jean Kayira, both core faculty in the AUNE Department of Environmental Studies, teamed with students Andrew Graham, Jess Gerrior, and Cynthia Espinosa Merrero for two sessions. “Everyone Eats: Community Gardening as a Practice of Civic Ecology & Resilience,” offered tools, practices, and programming approaches to empower people, increase food security, mitigate climate change, and build community resilience through garden-based education. “Climate Justice and Environmental Education: An Open Space Dialogue” was a participatory session for educators to engage with each other around issues of equity and justice in the face of climate change impacts.
Dr. McCann paired with Dave Chase, affiliate faculty in the AUNE Department of Environmental Studies, for the workshop, “What’s Change Got to Do with It? Evaluation Strategies 101,” a hands-on, interactive session providing ideas and resources, as well as helpful evaluation terminology, logic models, data collection methods, and evaluation planning strategies.
I am a Doctoral Fellow in Environmental Studies, developing a framework for food empowerment in my research habitat, community gardens. I see my work as cultivating knowledge and nourishing community as well as building thriving food systems. To this work I bring an appreciation for our interconnected nature, and edges as creative spaces.