The Insecurity Around Food Security

Our collective action project had nothing but high hopes and good intentions, yet just as the world would have it, things did not work out as planned. Food security is a prevalent issue that does not only affect undeveloped countries. Our hopes for this project were to shed light on the problem of food security in the city of Seattle, primarily for the homeless population, to raise an awareness that could be projected to a macro level. The original plan was to provide resources (food) leftover from a catering company’s normal business and host a meal at a church or tent city location. We had intentions to use this event as an opportunity to talk to members of the community afflicted by the underside of food security and then invite those who felt comfortable to speak at an informative public, town-hall style meeting with high-profile panelists who were experts in related fields. While the idea did seem a bit grand to begin with, I can say with complete certainty that none of us expected for our ideas to fall apart as drastically as they did. We faced problems with researching the laws around distributing food in the city (thankfully covered under Good Samaritan), having organizations respond to us within a reasonable time span, coordinating dates and times with the catering company, general hesitance to helping our cause whatsoever, and so on. These problems only emphasized our original purpose in choosing this topic for our project, which would be erasing the negative stigma around food so that this inegalitarian gap may be successfully bridged.
To combat all the obstacles being thrown at us, we turned to an educational outlet and opted to distribute brochures detailing key facts about food security and stressed the importance of understanding the legality and necessity of this problem in our city. This ended up being a reasonably positive alternative and allowed for us to clearly convey our message and avoid making anyone uncomfortable. The most important thing I took away from this project was that the reason problems in the modern food system persist is because people are either ignorant or are simply afraid to talk about them due to shame. I am grateful to have had the help of my group members who responded so quickly and creatively once things started going south, and I know that if the opportunity presented itself, we are all more than capable of facilitating an event like we had originally planned.

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