Food Fight: The New Generation of Activists
They grow and sell veggies, monitor school cafeterias, and blog about their efforts for the world to see-and most of them are still in elementary school. Get inspired by the child food activists who are doing good, and good for you.
Fed up with her school cafeteria’s scant beige offerings, nine-year-old Martha Payne began posting pictures on her blog NeverSeconds (neverseconds.
blogspot.com) and rating each day’s lunch on criteria such as healthiness, number of mouthfuls and presence of hairs.
The Scot’s blog has tallied seven million page views since it was launched in April and has given rise to a fundraiser to build a school kitchen in Malawi (over $175,000 has been donated by Martha’s followers-even Barry Manilow has chipped in). What’s more, she’s sparked a worldwide dialogue about school meals.
Closer to home, Lauren McMillan from Calgary started blogging on her 15th birthday after learning she had celiac disease. In the four years since, she’s inspired an online community at celiacteen.com by sharing gluten-free recipes and her journey back to good health. Fellow sufferers come to Celiac Teen for the vanilla cupcakes and stay for the sunny updates on graduation.
And budding gardeners Oliver Allen-Cillis (seven) and sister Piper (six), both pictured above, work with their mom, Stacey, on a Facebook page (facebook.com/oliversgardenproject), where they share news of their fundraising from backyard veggie sales. The siblings from Hamilton have helped five local families create their own gardens. Why does Oliver do it? “I like vegetables, and other kids should, too.”
Speak up: We’d love to hear how Web-savvy young people you know are inspiring others to care about good food. Please send your stories, photos and links to [email protected]
Photo: Wendy Alana Photography