Save the Date….STAND UP, SPEAK OUT SOUTH SEATTLE!!!

Got Green’s Earth Day Shout Out is a community megaphone event.

We are launching our new website and introducing an online platform that will feature videos and voices of people in our community. We have created a space for you to create media to make a difference. We are hosting this event for you to come speak your mind and make a video statement about any of the programs and actions that Got Green is spearheading. This is a chance for your voice to be heard, your chance to speak to your community, your elected officials and the world.

This is a Got Green media making festival come enjoy live performance, art, media and food. Browse our new website and learn about Got Green’s vision for the future. This is a free family friendly event, children are welcome.

For more information contact: Inye Wokoma | inye@ijoarts.com | 206.325.1159

REGISTER ONLINE BY CLICKING HERE

Food Desert in Skyway: “the place that Seattle forgot about”

by Ramata Diebate, Got Green Social Media Communications Team

After saving the Farmer’s Market Nutrition Program (FMNP), Got Green is taking the next step to ensure accessibility to fresh produce which will provide families in Southeast Seattle with a tool to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Got Green’s Food Access Team wants to make sure that Skyway residents have access to what the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) now calls MyPlate or the “healthy plate” which replaced the food pyramid in 2011. We have been surveying residents in Skyway, which is a food desert that lacks a grocery store or produce stand within reasonable traveling distance.

Our findings have been illuminating, as many Skyway residents state,

“We feel ignored. Skyway is the place that Seattle forgot about.”

This is a situation that Walmart is trying to use to its advantage in a pretty aggressive way, and we have that Walmart has plans to try and “break into” Skyway. Anyone that is familiar with the way this major retailer uses its economic prowess to gain access to neighborhoods that may not be interested in accepting it or would not benefit from its presence knows what we are talking about.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture defines “food desert” as a lower-income area without access to a supermarket or large grocery store.  A supermarket is defined as a retailer with annual sales of 2 million and it must contain all the traditional food departments including fresh meat and produce, dairy products, dry and packaged goods and frozen foods.

This requirement can be met only by large national grocery stores. A smaller local grocery or produce stand does not count under the USDA guideline, but I disagree. Although this is a lovely definition for a corporate giant waiting to move into a food desert, we feel that a community-based produce stand or co-op can provide fresh, locally grown produce, leave a smaller environmental footprint, and serve as a community gathering place.

Walmart is trying to use Skyway’s food desert status to gain access to Skyway. However, Walmart’s way of supplying produce which it will sell in Skyway may add to the problem. By driving down costs of production every step of the way, it increases the odds that fruits and vegetables will be produced in ways that favor their speedy growth with chemicals. Walmart’s distribution model favors using very few suppliers and its definition of “locally grown produce” is quite misleading when considering Walmart’s business plan.  Walmart plans to have only 9% of its produce sales constitute of “locally grown produce.” And this is in all of the Walmart stores combined – not in each retail store. Obviously if they use this type of propaganda to gain access to Skyway, the majority of the produce it sells will still be imported from other states or from established suppliers with which it has a relationship.

This is why we do not see Walmart as the answer. Obviously, a produce stand or farmer’s markets would make more sense to guarantee locally grown, healthy produce. 

Studies have shown that in areas where there is access to fresh produce, obesity rates go down and overall health improves. Neighborhood environment influences health and a holistic approach to ensuring access to fresh produce will take into consideration that fresh produce is locally grown in an environmentally responsible way and in a way that takes into consideration a neighborhoods overall health.

 Join Got Green on our Skyway Food Desert Campaign!

We are going out to the Skyway community on  Saturday April 7, to survey residents.

We need volunteers!!!

Please email Tammy@gotgreen.org  or call (206) 290-5136 for more info and how to get involved!

Got Green Helps Save Farmers Market Bucks

Good News!

The Farmer’s Market Nutrition Programs (FMNP) did not get cut and are included in our Washington State Senate and House Budgets!

Over the last 4 months Got Green worked to save the FMNP.

With your help we…….

*Collected over 250 petitions
*Organized two grassroots advocacy and lobby trips to Olympia
*Made calls to our legislators
*Sent letters to the editor

 As a Got Green supporter we want to thank you too!

 Please call our Southeast Seattle Legislators and Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown to thank them for their work to save this valuable program for our community! The two budget proposals now go through reconciliation but it is highly unlikely that FMNP would be cut at this point!

 THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT! IT MADE A DIFFERENCE! 

Message: I’m a Got Green Supporter and I’m calling to say “thank you” for saving  the Farmer’s Market Nutrition Programs!

Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown (360) 786-7604

37th District Senator Adam Kline (360) 786-7688

37th District Rep. Sharon Tomiko Santos (360) 786-7944

37th District Rep. Eric Pettigrew (360) 786-7838

11th District Rep. Bob Hasegawa (360) 786-7862

Or 1-800-562-6000

Want to help Got Green keep improving access to healthy and affordable food for our Southeast Seattle neighhorhoods? Email Women in the Green Economy Project Organizer Tammy Nguyen to get involved: tammy@gotgreen.org or (206) 290-5136


VICTORY!!!

GREAT NEWS!

The Farmer’s Market Nutrition Program MADE IT into the House Budget!

The House Budget INCLUDES funding for WIC FMNP!!!!! The news we had received this morning was that it wasn’t in the budget but after all of the confusion, we have GREAT NEWS! It has not been cut and it remains funded at the level from last year’s budget.

Our advocacy is working!!


Holding our legislators accountable in Olympia! HERE WE ARE…

By Violet Lavatai, Food Access Team Member

On February 14, 2012 Women in Green took a second trip to Olympia to join Faith Action Now (FAN) in fighting for some of the programs that Governor Gregoire’s new budget proposals have put on the chopping block for the regular sessions. One of the programs that the Women in Green’s Food Access Team is fighting for is the Farmers Market Nutritional Program (FMNP). The proposed cut is $100,000—the amount the state pays to administer the program. This small cut will force the state to lose nearly $900,000 in Federal food dollars.

Cutting $100,000 and losing almost $1 million dollars is bad math!

The program provides $20 each month to low-income families already in the WIC program (Women Infants & Children) and $40 to those in the Senior Farmers Market Nutritional Program to buy locally-grown fresh produce and fruits at the Farmers Market. They come in the form of vouchers and are given every quarter.

On our first trip we took with us 230 signed petitions to save FMNP, packets with information about the program, and who we are. As we ventured out on our second trip we were armed with 50 more signatures. We went back to make sure that our representatives were fighting for this program and to remind them again of how important it is to save! All of our legislators in SE Seattle (37th District) made firm commitments to fight to save this program. Please call and thank them – and ask them to keep the pressure on:

Senator Adam Kline – 360-786-7944 – adam.kline@leg.wa.gov

Representative Eric Pettigrew360-786-7838 – eric.pettigrew@leg.wa.gov

Representative Sharon T. Santos – 360-786-7944 – sharontomiko.santos@leg.wa.gov

**Call or email to say thank you and let them know how important FMNP is to you, your family, or your community**


We went to talk to each of them about some of the programs that we want to save and to ask them to champion these issues. When we went to their offices, they were on the floor voting, but their aides were there. We remembered that on our first trip we talked to Senator Adam Kline about the FMNP and it made a difference because with all the issues that came across his desk the FMNP stuck out. As we went to different offices we talked to each of the aides to make sure our programs would not get shuffled to the back-burner because we know that there are a lot of great programs being cut.

After talking to them we took a break for lunch, a few women from our WIG team were sitting on the bench in the Capitol admiring the buildings and statues, and someone ran in and said that Senator Adam Kline was on the steps of the Capitol. I went into “advocacy mode” (don’t know if that is correct but hey these are my words), I went outside and there he was- Senator Kline. So we circled around him and we knew we had to speak one at a time. So I spoke first and he remembered me from the last time WIG brought the FMNP to his attention. I directly asked the question that brought me to Olympia: “Is this program on your priority list”? And he replied, “Yes it is, it is 5th on the list.” I thought, that was like music to my ears. I thanked him and after talking to him we went back in to the Capitol. As we were filing back in to the Capitol one of the women from the other group mentioned that Senator Kline is a frequent customer to the Columbia City Farmers Market, which is located next door to the Got Green office (that would be us!) and how it would affect not only him but all the families that buy or sell there.

To spread the word more, our WIG team decided to seek out other districts and to pass out information on FMNP to get support wherever we can get. We dropped off letters to Representative Phyllis Kenny from the 46th District, and Representatives Ross Hunter and Bob Hasegawa from the 11th District. A legislative aide said she knew that he was not aware of this program being cut so one of our team members explained everything to her. As I think about this program that could easily be saved I often wonder if people know how important and vital FMNP vouchers are to these families (who are considered to be below poverty level).

Although she wasn’t in her office this time and we left her a packet, in response to our first visit, Senator Lisa Brown from the 3rd district and Chair on the senate side sent us a card to thank us and to let us know that she is a long time supporter of this program and “she will work to save this program.” On the ride home from Olympia I felt good about our WIG team spreading the message and not giving up hope. We know that $100,000 being cut and will result in the loss of a $900,000 program and this is bad math—it does not make sense!

So if you are reading this, help us out by calling or emailing your legislators to let them know how need this important this is to you—this program must be saved!