PSFN Welcomes New Farm to Community Coordinator (AmeriCorp)

Emma Brewster, Farm to Community Coordinator

Please join us in welcoming our newest AmeriCorp volunteer to NABC, Emma Brewster.  Emma has accepted the position of Farm to Community Coordinator dedicated to PSFN’s Healthy Eating Active Living Farm-to-Table project.  Perfectly timed, Emma will attend the first scheduled meetings with HEAL project partners in Seattle.

Emma is completing her work as a research assistant in the Department of Sociology at Cornell University examining food insecurity and other indicators of poverty in Upstate New York.  Emma is very passionate about, and interested in, food and its many roles in the lives of people — particularly women.  She holds a bachelors degree in Development Sociology from Cornell University with courses in Anthropology, Inequality Studies and Communication.

She has solid academic research and writing credentials in social sciences, is a critical thinker with good analytical and organizational skills. She has worked with non-profits both domestically and abroad, including New York, Kenya, Dominican Republic and Ethiopia and has served in multiple student leadership positions. Academically interested in the implications of global agriculture and the development of regional food systems intersection with public health, Emma looks forward to taking a more active role in research and community engagement here in Washington.

Emma will play an important role representing PSFN in the Farm to Table partnership led by Seattle Human Services. Emma will divide her time between Seattle and the Mt Vernon office working to establish contacts with project partners and farmers through site visits and regularly scheduled partner meetings. Emma will be responsible for tracking PSFN’s involvement in the partnership, writing reports and tracking all transactions related to the project as assigned by the HEAL Farm to Table coordinator.  Throughout her 9-10 month assignment, Emma will report directly to Lucy Norris, PSFN Project Manager and will interface regularly with PSFN’s Farm to Table Coordinator and other NABC staff and contractors.

City of Seattle-King County Public Health announced the 2010 award recipients who applied for $8.9 million in Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW) grants from the HEAL (Healthy Eating/ Active Living) Community Grant Program.  The Northwest Agriculture Business Center’s Puget Sound Food Network (PSFN) is receiving partial funding for its partnership participation with a project led by Seattle Human Services Aging and Disability Services.  The Farm to Table partnership is focused on connecting local food to Seattle’s least served communities through Congregate/Home Delivered Meal Program programs. The goal of this project is to make healthy foods, preferably local, affordable for senior congregate and home-delivered meals and child care centers by cooperatively purchasing fresh local produce through a Farm to Table partnership.

It will be the PSFN Farm to Table Coordinator’s responsibility to identify local food sources, negotiate pricing and create solutions that will lead to opportunities for expansion in Puget Sound and modeling in other cities, especially underserved communities.  A job announcement for Farm to Table Coordinator will be posted later this year.  PSFN will be tasked with tracking and reporting our contributions to this project, identifying key obstacles, and creating new solutions for the future. The project’s full duration is twenty months starting September 2010.

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