Nov 28, 2016, 9:00 AM, Posted by Dana Harvey
Mandela MarketPlace understands that community members hold the key to positive change. By lifting up a culture of community ownership, Mandela is increasing access to healthy food and sustainable business opportunities.
Sixteen years ago, I embarked on what I thought would be a year-long project to help the residents of West Oakland gain reliable access to affordable, nutritious food.
More than 23.5 million people live in low-income areas that are more than a mile from a supermarket, according to the USDA. That includes West Oakland, one of the city’s poorest areas. The community has a high rate of crime, pollution and unemployment—along with dozens of liquor stores and fast food outlets. Health outcomes are dismal; residents are two times more likely to be born at a low birth weight and 2.5 times more likely to die of stroke than residents in the nearby affluent area of Oakland Hills.