Morningside High School, Saturday January 29In a new year ready for new things, The Social Justice Learning Institute (SJLI) and TreePeople in collaboration with Inglewood Unified School District (IUSD) and City of Inglewood present the "2011 Fruit Tree Distribution Program" to the residents of Inglewood on January 29, 2011 from 9am-4:00pm at Morningside High School in Inglewood. This event serves as the "100 Seeds of Change" Kickoff event. The residents of Inglewood are invited to participate in the first major effort of 2011 to bring healthier lifestyles and healthy food to the city. The Fruit Tree Distribution Program, sponsored by TreePeople - a non-profit organization committed to increasing clean air, food access and canopy - is designed to empower community residents to take hold of their own access to food. Through this program, 700 Fruit Trees have been reserved for the City of Inglewood and schools as well as community residents, home gardeners, local businesses, churches and non-profit organizations. "Growing fruit in your back yard gives you the power to feed your family" says D'Artagnan Scorza, director of SJLI. He continued, "SJLI is committed to addressing the needs in our community and we believe diet related diseases represent serious challenges to the health and well being of our youth, families and friends. With this progam and more like it to come, we are ready to help put an end to those challenges in our communities once and for all." Starting at 9am, The Social Justice Learning Institute (SJLI) will host a day filled with the distrbution of 700 apple, appricot, nectarine, peach, and plum trees as well as conduct many events and workshops that give the chance for residents to get their hands dirty in our organic Epowerment Community Garden. It is also a day of celebration and recognition of the Inglewood community taking a BIG step towards greater access to quality, affordable, organic, healthy and culturally relevant food. "The Social Justice Institute is proud to to launch their partnership with the Inglewood Unified School District (IUSD) and City of Inglewood through the 100 Seeds of Change Initiative starting with this program." says Nicole Carter, Garden Coordinator of SJLI. The purpose of the initiative is to provide access to healthy produce by assisting and teaching community members how to grow and maintain a garden in their own space. Currently, the Social Justice Learning Institute is teaching and demonstrating gardening practices through active community gardens; primarily with the Empowerment Community Garden. The initiative also educates residents about health disparities related to food security issues and builds grassroots support with leaders, young and old, who are able to advocate for environmental and policy changes focused on food justice. The Empowerment Community Garden, located across the street from Morningside High School, is a student-initiated student-run project, which focuses on the sustainable growth of organic foods in Inglewood, California. SJLI's goals are to create employment opportunities for underprivileged youth through the establishment of an employment network connecting program participants to residents with home gardens, restoring land and fostering an environment that facilitates interaction between the students and the larger community. SJLI hopes that city residents join them in this very exciting, important and innovative experience. To RSVP, please contact Social Justice Learning Institute Food Justice Coordinator, Danielle DeRuiter Williams at
The Social Justice Learning Institute (SJLI) is dedicated to advancing social justice by empowering communities through education, training and programs that help to address their needs. We currently do this through our academic, food and environmental justice initiatives where we offer training, workshops, programs and resources to meet the community's needs. We provide on-campus literacy programs and college preparatory education. We also operate community gardens and orchards that provide a direct link to healthy food to our community members.