Center for an Agricultural Economy Hosts an EMERSON HUNGER FELLOW this fall!

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Posted: July 23, 2014

Beginning in September, the Center will be proud to host NORA LECCESE, who is one of 15 individuals chosen nation-wide to participate in the Congressional Hunger Center’s  Fellowship Program. The Emerson National Hunger Fellows Program is a social justice program that trains, inspires, and sustains leaders; sending people into environments all over the country and abroad where they learn from and contribute to home-grown solutions to solving food access and hunger in our communities.

Nora comes to us from Boulder, Colorado, where she’s been working most recently with Boulder Food Rescue.

  • Nora says “I’ve come to an understanding that lasting change can only come about through long-term sustained action that was devised, supported and carried out by community members themselves.”

It is this spirit and willingness to work on local issues, that makes us so excited about hosting her here in Hardwick for 5 months. Nora’s work plan while she’s here will include working at the Hardwick Food Pantry, with Bethany, Ruby Dale-Brown and pantry clients, as well as at the VT Foodbank Wolcott Center. She will also be learning about the infrastructure statewide that provides food and foodstuffs to those in need; she will take a look at our storage facilities, our distribution, and help to identify solutions for more accessibility and connection to food. Nora will be able to work with a second Hunger Fellow, who will be hosted by Vermont Housing Conservation Board. Together, their two projects are very exciting!

For the Center for an Agricultural Economy, with our mission as a community-based food system organization, it’s vital that we help to address issues of food access, hunger and feeding ourselves in our communities. Our focus on building a local food economy starts with a strong and vibrant economy, but one that must also be fair and just.

  • As Senator Leahy stated in a recent press release: “I am proud that two of Vermont’s strongest advocates for local, sustainable agriculture and food systems will be joined by two Emerson Hunger Fellows this fall. Their success in this competitive application process is another sign of Vermont’s ongoing leadership in helping those in need and in finding creative ways to address hunger and malnutrition. These partners will bring their energy and creativity to Vermont as we work together to bring closer the day when our state and nation can ease, and help eliminate, hunger and poverty. They are among the next generation of leaders who will help bring us closer to those goals.”

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