Celebrating Community with Sustainability Feeds

Finding time to pause for food and friendship: that’s the vision behind the Ruckus community Sustainability Feeds organized by Sustainable Dartmouth Interns, Madison Sabol ‘18 and Alex Sclafani ‘18.

“The idea is to bring together community and create shared experience around food,” says Madison. Over the course of the fall term, the two seniors organized three dinners to get campus excited about eating seasonally. Each feed had a unique theme. After the pumpkin harvest, for example, the two treated campus to pumpkin soup, quinoa pumpkin seed salad, and chocolate pumpkin bread. A successful corn harvest meant students enjoyed garlic cornbread and corn pudding with maple granola.

This term, Alex and Madison are keeping the tradition going with recipes that utilize ingredients preserved from the Dartmouth Organic Farm’s summer and fall harvests. According to Alex, the hope is “to get people excited about eating ‘locally’ in different times of the year when it’s not naturally thought of.” For their first feed of the winter, she and Madison prepared an eggplant, chickpea and tomato casserole to utilize some of the tomatoes that were preserved from the fall harvest.

Alex and Madison hope their work supports the Sustainability Office Inclusivity and Diversity Action Plan, which calls on us all to organize termly events that foster friend-making and community building in addition to events that educate our community on how sustainability works at Dartmouth. “We’re really trying to intentionally create community around food, and an inclusive space for anyone who wants to be involved in sustainability” says Alex. Often at feeds, students new to sustainability can learn about various clubs, programs, events and other ways to get involved with sustainability on campus. In this way, the Sustainability Feeds serve as a way for our Office to connect with students interested in sustainability issues and work on campus. Events like these help students put a face to a name they may otherwise only hear or see on email.

Feeds are advertised on the campus events and Ruckus listservs in addition to Sustainability Office social media and our website calendar. There are usually about 30 students in attendance, but Alex and Madison hope to see that number grow. “I’m constantly surprised by the people I meet at feeds,” says Madison. “Yes, you have students who stop by every single time, but there are always new people who stop in that I haven’t met before… Seeing that aspect of outreach in motion is awesome.”

The next feed will be Thursday, February 15th at 6:30pm at the Dartmouth Sustainable Living Center (SLC). All are welcome and encouraged to attend. On the menu? Pasta and homemade tomato sauce made with tomatoes from this summer’s harvest at the Dartmouth Organic Farm!

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