Bowser Spikes Joy into the Moten Community

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Bowser Spikes Joy into the Moten Community

 by Paula Reichel (source: CAFB)

On Thursday, February 28th Moten Elementary’s Joyful Food Market got a special visitor. D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser chose the Market as the setting for the announcement of her latest appointment, Spike Mendelsohn, who will serve as the Chair of D.C.’s inaugural Food Policy Council.

The Joyful Food Market served as the perfect backdrop for the announcement. A partnership between the Capital Area Food Bankand Martha’s Table, Joyful Food Markets are monthly, pop-up grocery stores in schools which provide families with 23 pounds of free, non-perishable groceries and fresh produce per enrolled child. Markets are joyful, community events where parents and children watch cooking demonstrations and take part in food preparation tutorials while sampling healthy, simple recipes they can recreate at home. At the Moten Joyful Food Market, Chef Spike got hands on with Market ingredients, preparing a glazed carrot recipe for the Market patrons and assisting students as they transformed leafy, fresh kale into crispy kale chips.

The Joyful Food Market at Moten is one of four pilot Markets currently operating in high needs schools in D.C.’s Ward 7 and 8. The Capital Area Food Bank also operates Family Markets, its original school pantry model, in 11 additional D.C. schools, seven schools in Maryland, and five schools in Northern Virginia. Both programs share the same objective, improving food security and healthy food access for children and their families.

The D.C. Food Policy Council will support initiatives like Joyful Food Markets by identifying regulatory barriers to the D.C. food economy, highlighting best practices for food access, and improving food education across the District. The Food Policy Council, together with a D.C. Food Policy Director, will make connections across the non-profit, private, and government sectors to foster an equitable, sustainable food system across all eight Wards of the city.

The Capital Area Food Bank looks forward to the work of the Council and to continue providing healthy, delicious foods to children and families across the Washington metro area.

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