The link between literacy and nutrition isn’t always clear. This is where my organization Everyone, Love Someone-The Social Entrepreneur Brand, comes in to make the connection. Everyone, Love Someone, makes the connection by hosting meal servings, reading workshops, and leading by example. We aim to encourage Philly youth to make choices to live healthy and motivated lifestyles through literacy and constant positive reinforcement. Our approach is to serve families and communities with compassion. We hope that the communities we work with will, in turn, demonstrate compassion toward one another.
Food literacy goes beyond nutritional recommendations and culinary lessons. It fosters important connections between food, people, health and the environment. You can see this clearly in one of our community invested projects, the Social Impact Café. At Social Impact Café, we build food-related habits, environments, and norms through reading food-related literature such as a restaurant review, recipes from cookbooks, or even nutritional labels. In addition, we partner with local restaurants, so we can communicate the importance of food literacy to surrounding communities.
Our work relies on a lot of community involvement. The saying ‘it takes a village,’ serves as the basis to reach and serve the community. We are glad to have the generosity of a growing network of local entrepreneurs, law enforcement, education administrators, religious leaders, and elected officials. All of these community members have helped our organization to engage with the community and provide opportunities for out-of-school enrichment.
Through relationships formed from previous in-service projects, we’ve been able to do in-service projects throughout the City of Philadelphia via partnerships with:
- Philadelphia Education Fund, GEAR UP & WorkReady, Philadelphia Youth Network. Through part-time employment from WorkReady, nine high school student interns from local schools were trained in the ethics of food access, food management, and customer service skills. By empowering them with an understanding of nutrition, we believe the youth can be role models in their communities.
- The School District of Philadelphia – F.S. Edmonds Library Redevelopments – We helped F.S. Edmonds renew their current library.
- Archdiocese of Philadelphia – Nutritional Service Department – In the month of July, students served 360 nutritious meals to local Mt. Airy & Chestnut Hill residents under the age of 18. Each guest was welcomed to eat with a community of other young people. We gave out books as lunch was served, and encouraged guests to take books with them to build their home library or enhance their current one.
To find out more about our projects, follow us @socialimpactcafe
Ms. Ericka L. Stewart celebrates 15+ years of experience and discipline in the human services field. She dedicates her heart and time into serving marginalized communities specifically; people living with HIV & AIDS; behavioral, mental, intellectual challenges; survivors of trauma associated with domestic, child and substance abuse.
Find out more about her work @socialimpactcafe