FEEST Intern Summer Camp – serious learning, serious fun

Alexa

Summer isn’t summer at FEEST without our annual intern leadership camp. A cohort of interns from Chief Sealth International High School and the Evergreen Campus gathered for 10 days to bond, play, and dive deep on issues like anti-oppression, food systems & food justice, facilitation skills, media making, sensory development & cooking skills.

This interview was conducted by FEEST’s Operations Manager, Juniper Rogneby, with first year intern Alexa Harris , a rising junior at Chief Sealth International High School. Alexa got hooked on FEEST after visiting a dinner on assignment from her school’s yearbook.

Juniper Rogneby: Three weeks ago, before camp started, what did you think camp would be like – what did you think it would be about?

Alexa Harris: Well, when I went into it super blind. Like I had gone to Detroit with FEEST for Allied Media Conference but other than that I’d never really spent a whole lot of time with everyone together, all the interns I mean. So I was mostly just super duper excited.

JR:What surprised you the most about camp?

AH: I was really surprised about about the certain things we learned, like anti-oppression. Even though I have started relating and connecting things to food justice, FEEST continues to surprise me with all the things (food justice) connects to.

JR: Tell me some specific things about anti-oppression that you learned.

AH: Well, how your area code can tell how long you’ll live.* That still hits home for me.

JR:  Did you bring that information home and share it with people in your family or community?

AH: Totally. I came home and told my mom and my grandma all about it. They were both really surprised. I definitely plan on bringing it back to my GSA when the school year starts. Especially because most of them live in the White Center/Delridge community and they are of color.

JR: Can you define “food justice” for me?

AH: For me, it means that everyone has equal access to healthy foods. Everyone is happy and healthy because healthy food isn’t too expensive or too far away.

JR: New topic: tell me about the intern team. Did anyone surprise you?

AH: Definitely. Some people completely came out of their shells. I had class with some other interns last year and I never ever would’ve expected that – they were talking to us all and sharing ideas, it was crazy!

Luwam and Abdikani.

JR: Tell me one new thing you ate during camp.

AH: Oh shoot, what were those things called? Falafel? Those were AMAZING. Like I could eat them for the rest of my life!


With special thanks to both Reel Grrls and Anna Goren for the fantastic workshops and to the Seattle Youth Garden Works crew for hosting us on a heart-expanding field trip, torrential downpour and all!

*Want to learn more about the correlation between zip code and health outcomes? Check out these two great resources:

Great map-based infographic on select US cities by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Regional data on life expectancy in King County: King County Health Profile published December 2014. FEEST currently serves youth in two schools in the Highline and Seattle school districts. Delridge and North Highline are the corresponding communities described in the King County data report.

[The interview was condensed and edited.]

 

FEEST Intern Summer Camp – serious learning, serious fun

Quyen Dang. 16- Chief Sealth

What’s The Biggest Risk You’ve Ever Taken? How does it connect to helping others?
– I don’t have one. But when I was little I was swimming and I just into the river.
How often do you eat fast food and what is your reasoning for consuming fast food?
– not a lot. Once a year maybe. I eat healthy food instead of fast food because it hurts your body.
Do you have a fresh produce market near your home? If so, how often do you go? 
– I do have one at Westwood but we go on the weekends.
Quyen Dang. 16- Chief Sealth

Sofia, 16 Chief Sealth

Check out this interview by Chief Sealth Media Intern, Mahala!
 IMG_1671“1 in 5 students suffer from child hunger” how do you feel about that?
That doesn’t make me feel good! Food is a very important asset of our lives especially having nutritious food. It’s really sad that people especially children should have the right to healthy food, no matter how much money they have it’s a basic necessity and it’s not fair!
 What could you do to help prevent child hunger? 
I could go to soup kitchens and cook food for people and children. I could donate to food banks and mentor a kid in my community by making sure that they have what they need.
 As a student what challenges do you face with food access at school?
The main thing is not having the best food at school which makes me not want to eat. I would like to eat a salad from school but they run out really quickly, also vending machines at my school have pretty healthy options unlike most schools we have juice and water and not soda. When I am really hungry I walk 8 minutes to Westwood village and spend $4 on a little thing of fruit that I do not think is a reasonable price for food and the most inexpensive foods are the unhealthiest.
What are you cooking at FEEST today? 
My group and I are making a salad with fruits, cheese, chard, spinach, carrots, and zucchini.
What is your favorite moment/memory from today’s dinner?
Just coming because I’ve never been before because it’s a good vibe and healthy food we can be excited about because we have the opportunity to make it ourselves.
Sofia, 16 Chief Sealth

Asher, 15- Chief Sealth

IMG_1532Q: Did you know that 1 in 4 students suffer from child hunger, how do you think that affects you personally?

A: I didn’t know that but I don’t think it affects me personally, I feel sympathetic for them but it doesn’t affect me.

Q: As a student what challenges do you face with food access at school?

A: Well I have to pay for lunch but that’s really it. At school the pizza is better than they were in middle school but about half of the food at this school I eat and the rest is DISGUSTING!

Q: What’s The Biggest Risk You’ve Ever Taken? How does it connect to helping others?

A: Well recently I volunteered for link crew and that helps incoming freshmen to get prepared for their oncoming high school years and I personally help them by mentoring them through their freshman year.

Q: Are you willing to help others in situations where you have the upper hand?

A: Yes, totally! If I have a friend who can’t afford lunch and I have money instead of buying them school lunch which I rarely eat myself I will go out and buy them lunch.

Q: Rate your day on a scale of 1 to 10 & why

A: 6, because it’s super slow going and I was extremely tired before I came to FEEST and my day is slowly progressing because of FEEST and the positive energy that FEEST brings to my life.

Asher, 15- Chief Sealth

Josh, 15- Chief Sealth

IMG_1463Q: What could you do to help prevent child hunger?

I could donate, donate money to ANYONE who is in need!! I have a food bank near my home that I could regularly donate to.

Q: Why do you think so many people eat school lunch?

Some kids probably don’t have enough money to afford food. I know people who survive off of school food.

Q: What’s The Biggest Risk You’ve Ever Taken? How does it connect to helping others

The biggest risk I’ve ever taken was crossfire!! Basically putting myself in between gunfire and violence! I feel like it helps others because it shows that being in those situations is not save and its not good to be around people who poorly influence you because you could be killed.

Q: How often do you eat fast food and what is your reasoning for consuming fast food?

OFTEN, probably like once a day!! I like it because I walk home and I see McDonald’s everyday so I just stop by!

Q: What are you cooking today?

Soup!!

Q: My favorite thing that happened today?

Coming to FEEST because it is COMPLETELY different from what I thought it would be!!!

Josh, 15- Chief Sealth

Jireh, 17 Evergreen

IMG_1209Q: What was your favorite dish tonight by far?

A: My favorite dish was the mango topping on the crepes, I liked the way it was sweet and sour.  It tasted really good on the crepes.  I have made this dish at home before for a different dish.

Q: If you could explain your FEEST experience in one word what would it be?

A: If I could describe FEEST in one word I would use “family” because when I came in today for the first time, everyone was friendly and kind to me I felt like I was accepted for everything I was, I was comfortable and loved it.

Q: Did you cook any dish tonight? If so, what was it and how did you make it?

A: I made the vegetable topping tonight, I mixed up the vegetables, cut them up and made them all together on a piece of lettuce.  It was really simple to make and everyone enjoyed it.

Q: Do you plan to come to FEEST again?  How would you rate your experience?

A: Yes, I plan on coming every week because I truly love FEEST and the feeling that it gives me.  I would rate my experience a 10 and I plan on coming to expand my knowledge on food and knife skills.

Jireh, 17 Evergreen

Jiamin, 18 Chief Sealth

IMG_1318Q: As a student what challenges do you face with food access at school?

A: I don’t eat school food, because I don’t like it! I would rather eat my own food from home! There is not enough school food to satisfy my physical needs.

Q: What’s the biggest risk you’ve ever taken? How does it connect to helping others?

A: Coming to FEEST and trying to learn to cook and be social is the biggest risk I’ve ever taken, FEEST connects to food access because it is easy for people to get to and I love that we get community service hours and FEEST gives people free food!!!

Q: Are you willing to help others in situations where you have the upper hand?

A: Yes, because helping someone is how you make them happy. Whenever you can help someone you should because you don’t know what someone is going through so you should always try to help!

Q: Rate your day 1-10

A: My day was GREAT, I will give it a 9, I had a wonderful time at FEEST! The food was great & tasty!!

Jiamin, 18 Chief Sealth