Current and Past Projects
GSCP’s focus is on helping to build a stronger, more equitable and more sustainable locally and regionally-based food system in the Tompkins County area. We have supported efforts such as providing healthier food in schools and gleaning “surplus” harvests from cooperating farms to make fresh food available to those most in need. We have sponsored block parties, and in the fall of 2011 and 2012 GSCP organized Ithaca’s annual “Food Justice Summit,” a celebratory and educational event with healthy food, live music and activities for all ages in a festive community-building setting. Mark your calendars for the next Annual Food Justice Summit! For more info, visit: www.FoodJusticeSummit.org
BUILDING A FOOD SYSTEM NETWORK
Our latest initiative is to create and support an ongoing network of and for the groups and individuals that are actively engaged or interested in strengthening the locally/regionally-based food system. We call it “Feeding Our Future.”
Food Justice Summit
In the fall of 2011 and 2012, GreenStar Community Projects organized Ithaca's first and second Annual Food Justice Summit, an uplifting, educational, community building event. Activities included a walk-a-thon in the morning and block party celebration in the afternoon. Over 100 people walked up to 5 miles around Ithaca visiting community and school gardens, ending at a neighborhood celebration where the streets were closed in downtown Ithaca to celebrate with live music, a local organic BBQ, guest speakers, youth activities and much more. For more info visit http://www.FoodJusticeSummit.org
Check out our photo album
Mark your calendars for the next Food Justice Summit in the Fall 2013!
Ithaca Community Harvest (ICH)
In March of 2010 GreenStar Community Projects partnered with the VIllage at Ithaca, the Greater Ithaca Activities Center, Southside Community Center and the Ithaca City School District to launch a community-wide initiative to create, sustain and expand a sustainable local food system that provides access to an abundance (both quantity and diversity) of seasonal produce to youth and families in Ithaca’s public schools, with particular focus on historically marginalized populations. ICH is a collaborative effort of a diversity of stakeholders including farmers, school administrators, activists/concerned citizens, nutritionists and many community organizations who share food access and equity goals.
GreeenStar Community Projects, Inc. produced a 2009-2010 academic calendar for families in the Ithaca City School District to help support healthy, seasonal eating through improved access to fresh, locally grown food throughout the year. Each month features a colorful photograph of an abundantly available but less familiar vegetable with nutrition information, storage and preparation tips and a recipe the whole family will enjoy! Calendars were available for a $5 suggested donation to the Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Snack Program at Beverly J Martin Elementary School.
Download a copy of the calendar
Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Snack Program
In May of 2008, GreenStar Community Projects, Inc. partnered with the New York Coalition for Healthy School Food (NYCHSF) and the Ithaca City School District to launch the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Snack Program at Beverly J. Martin Elementary School. The program was developed by Amie Hamlin, Executive Director of NYCHSF, with the support of GreenStar’s Co-op in the Classroom Committee, with the shared goal of improving children’s access to fresh produce. The program continues to serve all 365 students and teachers at the Beverly J. Martin Elementary School with fresh, nutritious fruit and vegetable snacks on a daily basis.
Summertime Block Party
GreenStar Community Projects, Inc. partnered with the Race Liberation Alliance, Multicultural Resource Center, Greater Ithaca Activities Center and STAMP's Green Guerillas to present the Second Annual Summertime Block Party on July 5, 2008.
The event was an uplifting afternoon concert and educational fair that fostered unity across diverse cultural, ethnic and socio-economic lines while promoting sustainable lifestyle choices. Over 1,000 people gathered in the Northside neighborhood to celebrate an alternative Independence Day weekend with activities that raised awareness and cultivated community engagement to create a healthier community for all.
Highlights of the 2008 Summertime Block Party:
Local food at its best! Everything from the meat, to beans, strawberries, kale, ice cream and practically everything in between came from local farms and vendors. This year we initiated “farm-to-fork” projects where volunteers and youth groups interested in learning about agriculture went to u-pick farms in the days leading up to the event. These educational field trips provided many youth and adults with their first experience on a farm while in turn providing an abundance of freshly picked produce for people to enjoy at the event.
Youth playing in the streets with painted faces were captivated by local musician John Simon and Village at Ithaca’s Cal Walker’s Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and a selection of Read-Along Songs. Afterwards kids nestled into the Family Reading Partnership’s Big Red Tent for bookmaking and storytelling with Native American storyteller Anontaks Barreiro.
Live music from local acclaimed musicians Food Clothes & Shelter, Thousands of One and Mbusi kept people of all ages dancing until sunset. Taina Asili y la Banda Rebelde, hailing from Philadelphia, laid soulful vocals over an infusion of hip hop and Afro-Caribbean sounds while weaving a fire breathing voice of rage and resistance throughout the crowd.
The Tuff Soul Street Fashion Show showcased sustainable, reconstructed natural fiber designs made and modeled by young teens.
Throughout the day people had a chance to peruse over 30 social justice and sustainability organizations that lined the street with educational displays and information.
Vendors with Values was a popular new addition where craft artisans shared their stories and sold their products from around the world.
The Summertime Block Party was bursting with the themes of local empowerment, food justice, healthy lifestyle choices, conscious consumerism, youth leadership, social justice and more. Thank you to all who came out and were a part of this special day, and to our partners and sponsors who made the event possible!