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The Carletonian

The Carletonian

The Carletonian

Caught in the ACT: Food Shelf

<st winter, the ACT Center presented its annual Civic Engagement Series on an increasingly relevant and always fascinating topic: food. The series explored food from all angles, looking at the local vs. organic debate, poverty and hunger, alumni careers in food, etc. Though the series was only a month long, many of ACT’s programs explore food related issues on a regular basis.
Through ACT’s Food Shelf program, volunteers can work at the Community Action Center Food Shelf to help make nutritious food available to all Northfield residents. In the past few months, this program has taken its mission a step further by working in collaboration with local farmers to provide the Food Shelf with their surplus produce.

Sara Doyle ’11, the Program Director for Food Shelf here at Carleton, and ACT’s interim director Kelly Scheuerman began working on this project after the Civic Engagement Series last year. They spoke with farmers who lacked enough labor to glean all of their crops, leaving much of the food to go to waste, and came up with a wonderful solution: free labor from Carleton volunteers + the local Food Shelf to distribute the produce = less waste all around and an accessible source of fresh fruits and vegetables for those in need.

Doyle said that the first gleaning event of the year was “a huge success—we harvested 568 pounds of tomatoes, squash and cucumbers and donated it to the Food Shelf.” She has also been involved with the local organization Growing Up Healthy and its movement to get an EBT card reader at the Northfield farmers markets so that residents can pay with food stamps. For more information on getting involved with these or other ACT programs, stop by the ACT Center in Sayles 150!

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