Mississippi has been marred with label of having the most obese children in the nation. Over forty-four percent of Mississippi children between the ages of 10 and 17 are obese or overweight. Mississippi also has one of the highest percentages of African-American people out of all fifty states. Therefore it would be safe to assume that many of these children being affected by overweight and obesity are African-American or children of color. In a state surrounded by farmland it is hard to imagine that food-deserts would exist and yet they do. Food deserts are not unique to big cities and “urban” areas, they exist in every corner of our country even where the farmland is abundant and the soil is rich.
But it’s not all bad news. I continue to read article after article about community efforts to increase the amount of healthy, fresh fruits, vegetables, legumes and grains available to these food deserts. Community and Urban Gardens are leading the way. The video below is of one of these gardens. This garden touches my heart especially because the children are given the opportunity to take part in the process of growing and cultivating their own crops. It not only gives them a sense of pride but a higher propensity to eat fresh fruits and vegetables for life.
I tried to insert the video but unfortunately I keep on doing something wrong so here’s the link on youtube: