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Community food security in North Minneapolis: Barriers and solutions

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  1. Introduction.
    1. Continued to denial of the existence of hunger in the United States.
    2. Keeping the hunger in this country invisible.
    3. Community Food Security.
  2. North Minneapolis.
    1. Composition.
    2. Minneapolis' most racially diverse area.
    3. Disproportionate amount of health problems.
  3. Supermarket disinvestment.
    1. Financial disinvestment in low-income communities.
    2. Food retailers.
    3. Research study published by the Hennepin County Public Services and Human Health Department 2002.
  4. Transportation.
    1. The deficiencies of the North Minneapolis routes.
    2. Innovative ways of providing low-income and inner-city residents with transport to the supermarket.
  5. Emergency food.
  6. Food cooperatives and community control.
  7. Bibliography.

Despite an overwhelming amount of facts, studies, and annual reports proving the contrary, many people today continue to deny the existence of hunger in the United States. Middle-aged Americans will recall hearing their parents demanding them to ?finish your dinner because there are people without food in Africa or China.? Not many of these parents repeated the metaphor with children going without food in Detroit or Newark. Furthermore, today one does not have to go to any of these cities that have become synonymous with urban decay to see signs of hunger. Minneapolis, often ranked by magazines as one of the top five urban areas to live in the U.S., has a hunger problem (A Municipal Food Policy for Minneapolis).

[...] For this reason the quality of supermarket food and the ability to access this food plays a major role in the health of the residents of north Minneapolis. ?Food retailers have redlined low-income neighborhoods,? says Hannah Burton, the program director for the Philadelphia Food Trust Supermarket Campaign. Many other researchers have studied the effects of this type of disinvestment since the trend began in the 1960's. The pattern of supermarket flight has been shaped along racial as well as class lines. [...]

[...] There are five food shelves that serve residents of North Minneapolis: Salvation Army North Branch, Masjid Al-Nur, First Community Baptist Church, Pastor Paul's Mission, and Northpoint Health and Wellness (formerly Pilot City). Each of these food shelves receives products from Second Harvest, a national non-profit food shelve. The food items mainly come from the un- marketable supplies of corporate food manufacturers and government surplus programs. These agencies serve thousands of North Minneapolis residents every year. the last four years the demand for food shelves in all of Minneapolis, including the north side where we have many member agencies has gone says Cindy Kimmel, Director of Agency Relations of Minneapolis Second Harvest. [...]

[...] was like outside people made all the decisions and the community was secondary to everything being decided.? In 2004 Dawson and her colleague Bernadette Longo began what was to become the North side Food Project. With collaboration from local churches and community groups they were able to launch several projects to raise public awareness of food insecurity in North Minneapolis. They started a community garden at Cityview School where students could grow their own food and provided nutrition education for the students. [...]

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