Four years ago when Miguel Jardine and I created our model called the LFE (Local Food Economy Model) we were brainstorming about what a healthy local food system would look like. Since then I have written, postulated, explored and written some more and what I have come up with is a whole lot of ‘content’ and not a whole lot of ‘do’. AND those of you that know me, know that as far as I am concerned talk is cheap and ‘do’ is where it is at.
I teach one class at Arizona State University (ASU) called Sustainable Food and Farms. Love the class and typically I get 70 to 90 students per semester who all get to jump in and explore ‘what real food is’. Ever asked yourself ‘what is real food?’ Ponder that for a while.
In the scope of my time at ASU this past semester I met a Professor named Paul Hirt who is teaching a graduate class on creating local sustainable food systems in Croatia. I jokingly told him he should take me along for the ride and before I knew it I had a full ride scholarship to join the class for two weeks in Koprivnica, Croatia. We are going over to explore their food system, learn what and how they are growing food for their communities and perhaps to impart a little wisdom of our own. I suspect with their long history and deeply rooted local foods I will be taking away much more than I contribute.
One of the many places I will be visiting is UdrugaKopriva whose mission is to:
Udruga je osnovana s ciljem okupljanja građana sa svrhom ostvarivanja sljedećih ciljeva:
- promicanje, podupiranje i zaštita ideja civilnog društva te doprinos njegovom razvitku
- poticanje na međusektorsku suradnju suradnja s tijelima lokalne uprave i samouprave kroz zajedničku organizaciju i provedbu određenih projekata u cilju poboljšanja kvalitete života lokalne zajednice
- civilni nadzor institucija države i lokalne samouprave
- promicanje aktivizma i razvijanje volonterskog rada među svima društvenim skupinama a naročito među mladima na lokalnoj, regionalnoj i nacionalnoj razini
- osnivanje volonterskog centra odnosno društvenog kluba na području grada Koprivnice u skladu s posebnim propisima
The association was founded with the aim of bringing together people with the aim of achieving the following objectives:
- promote, support and protection of the idea of civil society and its contribution to development
- encouragement of intersectoral collaboration cooperation with local authorities and governments through joint organization and implementation of specific projects in order to improve the quality of life of the local community
- civilian oversight of state and local government
- promote activism and the development of voluntary work among all groups of society, particularly among young people at local, regional and national level
- establishment of a volunteer center or social club in the town of Koprivnica in accordance with special regulations
Ivan – One of the Founders of Kopriva
OK this is going to be interesting – Maybe Like them on Facebook? Hey if I would have known even a few years ago that I was going to Croatia, I would have at least tried to become a little fluent in Croatian. I once wrote a poem about a woman I met at a local coffee house that spoke no English and I spoke very little Spanish…that’s an interesting story for another day though.
So let the adventure begin. Join me for my posts, videos, pictures, but most of all comment and interact on my posts. I am excited for this adventure to begin and to see how it progresses
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