August 2017 Archives

EatThis! Summer Camp 2017

Volunteer Coordinator
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IMG_3151.JPGThere's no place like RecipeHouse in the summer. Our Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Education™ programs don't end on the last day of school, they just turn the page to a new chapter: summer camps! In our themed camps, kids learn how to easily prepare and enjoy healthy foods, and during visits to Hope Farms they see how their favorite new foods are grown and harvested.

In June, our Eat This! camp, inspired by Marco Polo's journey on the Silk Road, explored the culinary cultures of Greece, Italy, India, and China. Campers earned stamps in their passports for making a delicious dish that celebrated each country With fresh produce from Hope Farms, children cooked up Greek salad, Italian homemade pasta with tomatoes and kale, and Chinese stir fry. Times between meals were used to learn about Marco Polo's journey and the different countries and cultures which he visited. With the help of these stories, the kids learned that these unknown food and cultures were not 'weird' but rather 'different' versions of many things they already loved.

Danielle, a camp helper, says "I'm always surprised at how much the kids love the curry we make. It just goes to show how kids can like all different types of foods if they just try them".

Another camp counselor noticed that kids who at the beginning did not care for tomatoes, were eating the Hope Farms cherry tomatoes like candy!

"The favorite day for our Marco Polo campers was definitely the last day in China", says Danielle. Each kid created their own version of stir fry and all of the campers sat in a circle- traditional Chinese family style. This last meal marks the end of camp and represents the family that the campers have created during the week!

At Recipe for Success we make it our mission to change the way children see and appreciate healthy foods, and camps at the RecipeHouse are no different. For more details about upcoming programs, contact justinkouri@recipe4success.org

Hope Farms Gets Thumbs Up

Volunteer Coordinator
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Hope Farms came alive in May with students from Rodriguez Elementary School on a field trip and picnic visit

Bruce Simon is Volunteer of the Month

Volunteer Coordinator
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Bruce Edit.jpgWhile on summer break from his three year stretch as a substitute teacher, Bruce was in search of a volunteer opportunity in which he could positively impact children's lives. He learned of Recipe for Success Foundation through Volunteer Houston and jumped in feet first, engaging in summer camp, hope farms work days, and office work dedicating over 150 hours this summer alone. In the office, Bruce singlehandedly organized a mailing list for an upcoming event and helped convert hundreds of documents into electronic files. Chief Agricultural Officer, Justin Myers, commented on Bruce's "dedicated and positive presence on the farm throughout the heat of the summer. His calm nature and hard work have allowed the farm to navigate through epic weeding and make a successful transition into preparations for the fall planting season."

No matter the task, Bruce feels that his work serves a purpose. Though he may not always directly interact with children, he understands that the work performed ultimately helps them. Introduced to gardening during childhood through time spent at his grandmother's Houston home, Bruce had access to fresh okra, tomatoes, and corn. It wasn't until he joined the army that he learned the retail cost of these vegetables and understood one of the benefits of growing one's own produce. Since then, Bruce has hoped to have a garden of his own one day. His time spent volunteering during summer camp this year helped develop a new appreciation for a variety of veggies. "Paola has turned me into a kale freak," he adds, commenting that he now substitutes kale where he once ate lettuce. Outside of volunteering and when not acting as a hero in the classroom as a sub, Bruce enjoys nature and particularly likes to take road trips with his two sons.

Chronicle Reports on Hope

Recipe for Success
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Chron image of Justin.jpgNonprofit Recipe for Success brings produce, jobs to Sunnyside as reported by John D. Harden / Houston Chronicle, August 7, 2017

By mid-morning, Justin Myers' hands were covered with dirt, his stubble dripped with sweat and his clothes smelled like the dark soil he was using to plant the upcoming season's crops.

He and six other volunteers arrived in Sunny-side at 6 a.m. Wednesday to tend to the okra, cabbage and peppers planted through winter and spring and to prepare for the farm's first autumn production. <<Read the entire article.>>

Hope Farms Blooms

Recipe for Success
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CityBook Justin at Hope Farms.jpgHouston CityBook features Hope Farms in August 2017.

Hope Blooms in Sunnyside

An urban-farm project a decade in the making is on the grow in south Houston. And, if its founder has her way, bringing fresh produce to one of the city's worst food deserts -- and to H-Town's top chefs -- is just the beginning.

On the corner of Scott Street and Airport Boulevard in the historic Sunnyside neighborhood in southern Houston, a garden blooms. Behind a chain-link fence, in a field formerly occupied by the now-torn-down Carnegie Vanguard School, lie row after cheery row of cherry tomatoes, eggplant, bell pepper and okra. On a bright day in July, the two currently cultivated acres of the seven-acre plot are being carefully tended to by a handful of workers -- all U.S. veterans -- who are just as eager to see the fruits of their labor at Hope Farms as Gracie Cavnar, of the nationally lauded and Michelle Obama-endorsed Recipe for Success. Cavnar is the founder of and visionary behind the urban vegetable oasis, which is bringing fresh and healthy produce to one of the city's largest food deserts. Read more.