Seeds We're Planting in 2023
Mathew Roberts, CFI Board Vice President: My wish is to see a new community garden get built in Athens County! Perhaps in Albany?
Molly Gassaway, CFI Director of Garden Programs: I'm looking forward to building upon school and community connections to strengthen and expand our garden-related programming for both youth and adults.
Sam Alexander, Food Access Coordinator COMCorps member (2022): My goal for 2023 is to share more meals with my friends, colleagues, and neighbors.
Tiffany Arnold, CFI Board member: My goal is always to help others see the Appalachian region for the dynamic, complex, and amazing place that it is.
Maribeth Saleem-Tanner, CFI Executive Director: In 2023, I'm excited to deepen the roots of existing connections, and also to branch out and hear new voices, visit new communities, and build new relationships.
Adam Kody, CFI Board President: I hope that CFI continues to nurture and grow its inherent program strengths while utilizing the strategic planning process to help further cast a course for the future!
Lucy Peloso, Garden Education Coordinator COMCorps member: My hope and goal for this year is to focus on connection. I think this goal is personal and CFI-related (because all things in life are connected!). I hope to increase connections with this community, my connections with nature and the natural world, and my connections between my values, dreams, ideas, hobbies, and more - and to truly be intentional about living these out. Another goal I have is to move more. I want to be active everyday - whether through working out, yoga, going for a walk, getting fresh air, gardening, etc.
Sarah Stonerock, CFI Intern, 2022-2023: In 2023 I hope to better understand food accessibility and how we at CFI work to encourage this, as well as what we could do better. I would also like to better understand the limitations that CFI faces, as well as what I can do as an individual to help.
Susie Huser, CFI Director of Outreach: One wish for 2023 is for CFI to cultivate the relationships and practices that support a thriving a diverse ecosystem in our gardens and community, and to inspire others to do the same. A related wish is for all of us to empower each other, especially youth and college students we engage with, to take action in our own lives to support a diverse, equitable, and thriving food system.
Sierra Faris, CFI Board Treasurer: My goal for CFI in 2023 is to expand awareness so that every person in Athens county knows of its presence and amazing programming. I would also love to see some of CFI's models and programs expand to outside of the Appalachian Region. Imagine a world in which food security, farm security, and food waste is fought with Donation Station and education!
Linda Parsons, CFI Board Secretary: My 2023 New Year's wish for CFI is to continue the great work they do to connect the community with fantastic food, great green gardens, sharing seed savers, and wide reaching workshops. My goals for 2023 are to volunteer in a variety of ways and hoping my garden grows more fruits and veggies to donate this year. Best New Year's wishes and peace to all the CFI staff, volunteers , and partners!
Raya Abner, Community Gardens Coordinator COMCorps member: My wish for this year is more sustainable community gardens--both through permaculture methods for environmental sustainability and community engagement opportunities for people sustainability. The dream is for healthy, regenerative soil and folks coming together to celebrate food and life while getting their hands all covered in that soil. (-:
Jessica Hough, Local Food Access Community Relations VISTA: I would like to find more time for myself and the things that bring me peace and joy. Such as painting, reading, and cooking/baking for pleasure and experience rather than cooking for necessity. Every day life is so full of "needs" and "have-to's" that sometimes I let those things run and take over every aspect of my life. I wish for myself to find and make time for myself in 2023.
Reggie Morrow, CFI Donation Station Program Manager: For 2023 I wish to see Community Food Initiative branch out of its shell to grow into an organization that is more substantial in connecting the little pieces to the big pieces and mending a network of solidarity from the home and community gardener, to the local CPA and AFM farmer; and from the Food Banks and pantries to the small town libraries, schools, and community groups. Solving food insecurity together.