Help Us Win A Fruit Tree Orchard For Our Area in Need of Healthy Food Options
Our Turley and North Tulsa community is in the running for a forty tree fruit tree orchard as it has been selected to be in a national online voting competition by the National Fruit Tree Foundation and Edy's Fruit Bars. Five orchards a month will be awarded to communities receiving the top votes in a contest that will begin April 15 and last through August at http://www.communitiestakeroot.com/Plant/Index. Please bookmark this link and go to it every day for a quick click and vote. Representing the local community in the competition is the area non-profit A Third Place Community Foundation. Our volunteer group raised $15,000 last summer to purchase a city block on North Johnstown Ave. and N. 60th St. overlooking downtown Tulsa where it is building The Welcome Table Community KitchenGardenPark on the site where abandoned houses once stood. The project is called the "Miracle Among The Ruins." Purchasing the site was the first miracle, getting the rundown eyesore homes removed was the next, and the fruit tree orchard will be another miracle on this site. If we win an orchard, the planting will take place at the new park site and with its partners in the area, according to Ron Robinson, Executive Director. "We hope everyone will go to the website every day and quickly click on our community, and encourage all their friends and family around the world to vote for us, because so few of our local residents have computers and internet access," he said. Robinson said the orchard is vitally needed not only to beautify the area and help complete the park as an asset in an area with few public amenities, but to add to the healthy food needs of the residents in the 74126 zipcode. A recent nutritional survey conducted by the OU Graduate Social Work students and the A Third Place Community Foundation revealed the following statistics about health and nutrition in its service area: ...55 percent worry about the amount of food they have ...6 percent use spoiled food ...29 percent use a food pantry ...31 percent receive food from church ...35 percent borrow food from family ...25 percent borrow food from friends ...25 percent adults skip entire day from eating ...29 percent adults skip meals ...26 percent did not eat and are hungry at time of survey ...43 percent eat less than they should ...60 percent eat low cost foods ...52 percent cannot afford nutritious meals ...57 percent run out of food ...60 percent cannot afford healthy food The Food Environment: ...29 percent have no affordable source of food in community ...63 percent know about a food pantry ,..56 percent rate the food quality in Turley area as fair or poor ...59 percent indicate food in Turley area expensive or very expensive relative to budget Overall Health: ...56 percent not currently healthy ...41 percent health is fair or poor ...54 percent are overweight ...66 percent should weigh less ...47 percent smoke or use other tobacco A Third Place Community Foundation, a new 501c3 organization made up of volunteers with all funds going to mission, runs not only The Welcome Table park but also has recently purchased a large old historic abandoned church building at 5920 N. Owasso Ave. and is reclaiming and reopening it as The Welcome Table Community Center with free internet and computer center, library, game and meeting and program space, food pantry, 12 step recovery group, clothing giveaway, prayer and meditation room, and classrooms for a health hub. Its former community center on North Peoria was in rented space. Robinson said the purchase of the building, aided in part by a grant from the Zarrow Foundation, has helped to take an abandoned and vandalized building and is transforming it back for community use. The center has now reopened on a part time basis in its first phase of remodelling. We also run the area free summer lunch meal program at Cherokee School for all under 18 year old, and do environmental reclaiming and promotion of native wildflower plants in this region at schools and public sites. A Third Place Community Foundation is also involved with the McLain High School Initiative, Cherokee School, OU Community Health Worker project, and other events and items as part of its mission of "renewing community, empowering residents, growing healthy lives and neighborhoods" through small acts of justice done with great love. For more on the group and area and to donate go to www.turleyok.blogspot.com. Or call 9186913223.
Posted by Ron at 7:42 PM