Two days after arriving in the US, Madeleine Kabena found herself in an emergency room with her five-year-old daughter, Aline. Despite how it sounds, this was exactly why Madeleine and her family applied for the Diversity Visa lottery that allowed them to immigrate. They came here to find treatment for Aline, who was born with a genetic disorder. Although her health problem doesn’t have a cure, regular treatments can vastly improve both symptoms and outlook. At home in the Congo, treatment was limited and the threat of malaria loomed daily. [caption id="attachment_1737" align="alignright" width="225"] Madeleine's daughter[/caption] While Madeleine brought her family here so her daughter could have a better life, it hasn’t all been easy. At first, it was a high to be in the United States but then reality began to sink in. There were the usual things, like learning a new language, but also some deeper issues. Food at the hospital was not good and she wasn’t finding traditional foods in her neighborhood. In the Congo, there are more than 200 cultures and what connects them all is the belief in good food. It is even thought that some disease can be healed through a healthy and nourishing diet. In fact, this is what Madeleine believes allowed her daughter to survive so long without regular treatments. [blockquote author="Madeleine" blockquote class="size-medium wp-image-1737 alignright]“Luckily I found that Chinese and Hispanic produce is very similar to Congolese. I shop there for vegetables like cassava, okra, and greens.” [/blockquote] [caption id="attachment_1744" align="alignleft" width="169"] Madeleine with her daughter[/caption] By searching for culturally appropriate foods, Madeleine discovered a distinct lack of Congolese shops, restaurants, or even organizations in King County. In all her asking around for connections to food, she eventually met a Congolese man who called himself a ‘Community Food Advocate.’ Madeleine was intrigued and hopeful. Over the first few years in the US, she worked as a caregiver at Wesley Homes. Her first profession was as a lawyer but her degree didn’t permit her to practice in the US. Becoming an advocate with FIN allowed her to represent people again while also building food connections for her community. [blockquote author="Madeleine"]“Unlike what I see in the Latino and Somali communities, the Congolese community here is small and very spread out. We sometimes struggle to connect with each other.” [/blockquote] Madeleine’s hopes for the Congolese community in King County are the same as her hopes for her own family. In her own words... “I want people to have the best chance at life. And for us, that starts with things like healthcare and jobs but always ends with food and family.”
SeaTac’s first farm stand This Thursday, 4-6pm at Matt Griffin YMCA. Get local fruits and vegetables.
SeaTac’s first farm stand at the Matt Griffin YMCA. . Come shop for local fruits and vegetables at the farm stand this Thursday, from 4-6pm at the Matt Griffin YMCA. This week we’ll have cherries, peaches, apricots, apples, carrots, rainbow chard, sugar snap peas, salad mix and zucchini! Come on opening day and get a FREE COOKBOOK! What’s cookin’? WSU’s Food $ense will be doing cooking demos—sharing easy, healthy recipes you can use with produce bought from the stands. The Eating Well for Less cookbook features recipes and tips for eating on a budget. Recipes are kid-tested!
SeaTac's first community garden (located at North SeaTac Park) is now accepting applications! See the garden application for more details: CommunityGardenApplication_2017
We just finished FIN's 2nd community kitchen event at the SeaTac community center. I was excited because it was open to the whole community and many people showed up from the City of SeaTac and Highline College. It was such a great experience to work with new people in the kitchen. I think everyone enjoyed the food and were happy about this event - the most important thing is that people walked out with new friends and new ideas. A big THANK YOU to everyone that helped out. We couldn’t do it with our wonderful advocates; Gladis, Lidia, Muslima, Zozan and myself. Thank you for sharing dishes from your countries. We are also thankful to all the volunteers, Seth Schromen- Wawrin, Colleen Brandt- Schluter and Erika Martinez we couldn’t do with our help in the kitchen. Brian Tomisser and So Won Kim for organizing event and welcoming guests. If you missed this community kitchen, stay tuned for the next one coming in Fall 2017! Sheelan Shamdeen June, 15,2017
Last Saturday, FIN advocates, along with other partners, attended the YMCA's Healthy Kids Day and hosted a cooking station to demonstrate to kids and parents how fun and easy it is to eat healthy food. Here's what Gladis had to say about the experience: "It was a great experience for me to participate in the Healthy kids event at Matt Griffin YMCA. It was the first time that I have the opportunity to teach hands on how to make guacamole, which is a food that represents my culture and it is also a healthy dip made from vegetables.I really enjoy knowing that a healthy recipe can make a difference in somebody's life, especially with children and since this event was family friendly, many families could taste and learn from scratch how to make this food.I am very thankful to FIN for give me the chance to connect with the community through food." - Gladis Clemente [gallery ids="1449,1450,1451,1452,1453" orderby="rand"]
We are excited to host the 2nd Annual FIN Resource Fair May 12th from 5:30-8pm at Foster High School. This year we will be bringing together resources for both entrepreneurs and community members. Folks can get help starting a food business, finding a job in the food industry, or taking food and nutrition classes. More than 20 resource providers will be participating. We will have fun children’s activities and feature food from the FIN entrepreneurs. Join us in celebrating the diversity of South King County through food! If you are interested in coming or want to invite others, visit us on Facebook.
City of SeaTac’s first community garden is scheduled to open the spring of 2017 at North SeaTac Park adjacent to the botanical and Japanese gardens. The community garden will have small garden plots available to SeaTac residents for rent (April 1-October 31). Plants grown on the rented plots are for personal use, donations or to share with others. Eligibility ~ Plot holder must be at least 18 years of age. ~ City of SeaTac residents have priority in receiving a plot. Non-residents may apply and be assigned a plot if available. Residency will be confirmed by a valid State of Washington driver’s license or utility bill. ~ A maximum of 2 plots can be assigned to a household if all other eligible gardeners have received a plot. Registration Opens Tuesday, January 3rd! ~ You may register at the SeaTac Community Center. Link to application form is below. ~ Registration fee is $40 per year. Registration information provided in links below. SeaTac Community Garden Brochure (Information, Rules & Regulations)
What is Healthy Eating Like in Your Community? The Healthy King County Coalition, in partnership with The Family Resource Center at Angle Lake, is hosting a community conversation. Participants will receive a complimentary meal and grocery gift card, and childcare will be provided. Space is limited, so register quickly!
Monday, August 22nd, 2016 12 (Noon) to 2pm 4040 S 188th St Suite 100, SeaTac WA 98188To register call Zac Eskenazi at (206) 816-3241 with the following information:
- Phone number
- Number and age of children