Friday, March 20, 2020

Food System Responses to COVID-19

As an environmental educator with a special focus on food systems, adapting my graduate and undergraduate courses to fully online delivery has become an urgent need. Email communications from the three institutions I work with have about tripled in the last few weeks as both the needs and creative potential of students and faculty emerge and policies seem to change daily.

Managing the homestead has come a completely new game with two teenagers at home full-time. That part hasn't bad - we're getting a ton of spring yard work done, and they self-manage their schoolwork for 3-4 hours/day. It just takes a whole lot of executive functioning to create routines and structures that are conducive to both productivity and health. Keeping perspective. We are healthy, and we're privileged to have a safe home, reliable wi-fi connection, and food.

Speaking of food, the situation is opening a whole new dimension of awareness for my students, family, and professional communities about the critical work of food systems - food resilience, food justice, food security, food sovereignty... Many additional emails are coming in from food system topic listservs, organizations, and local partners as the impetus for our work suddenly comes to the fore. My intention is to build on that awareness as I adapt my work to the demand.

Here are some resources for understanding the issues: