CSA For Everyone
Just Food’s CSA subsidy program has been life-changing for many New York City residents, including Krista Tinei Oakes and her family.
Krista is a member of Brooklyn's Crown Heights CSA, one of 12 CSAs that received funding from Just Food this past season to help lower the cost of CSA shares for more than 75 families. Without the subsidy, these community members would not be able to participate in their neighborhood CSA.
“We’ve benefitted greatly, because we eat so much better,” Krista says of the program. “It feels good eating produce and knowing where it comes from, and I feel like I’m helping the farmers, too. It’s a wonderful relationship.”
In Krista’s neighborhood, the alternative options for quality, fresh food aren’t the best or the most affordable. “I would probably end up using the faster, easier options like pre-cut packaged or frozen foods,” she says. “Since I have a toddler, efficiency is important.”
Being a CSA member has exposed Krista and her family to a wide variety of produce. “We get to cook with foods we normally wouldn’t have tried because we didn’t know what they were,” she explains. Her favorite new vegetable: baby bok choy.
Another positive aspect has been the sense of community, Krista says. Each week, she brings her young daughter on the short walk from their home to the CSA site to pick up their share. “I love feeling like a part of the neighborhood, seeing familiar faces and recognizing people. This is our outlet to connect with the community.”
Just Food has been working to develop CSAs across New York City for nearly 20 years. An important part of the CSA program has been creating access to healthy, local food for people of all income levels.
Do you believe that all New Yorkers should be able to provide healthy meals for their families? Consider donating to our annual “CSA for Everyone” campaign now through February 28 and help fund the CSA subsidy program. Let's raise $10,000 so that 100 low-income families can join CSAs in 2014.