Food Ladders: A multi-scaled approach to everyday food security and community resilience

Everyday food insecurity is more than just a lack of access to food based on income.  Poverty creates a hole that has emotional and nutritional effects, as well as implications for community cohesion. Food insecurity as it intersects with poverty also materialises in places to produce landscapes where food availability and the social connections it enables are scarce (for an open-access paper see Blake 2019).  Poor foodscapes contribute to vulnerabilities to the shocks associated with limited food choices, which in turn reduces the resilience of places and people by producing want, poor health, social isolation, and fear and distrust of one’s neighbours.  The Food Ladders approach seeks to overcome these place-based aspects of vulnerability by developing positive engagements through food and ultimately aims to help communities become the places where people want to live, raise their children, and grow old.  Continue reading

Response to call for submissions for the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights to the UK Government

This response underpins the oral evidence presented by Dr. Megan Blake at Bristol University on 6/11/18.  The hearing focused on rural poverty.  

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More than just food

Video

A film about how community organisations are using food to help overcome loneliness and everyday food insecurity, while also transforming their communities.  Eating together with others, what I call social eating, has so many benefits.  Continue reading

Enabling people to “Freeze the moment” through food engaged support

I was recently invited to participate in an impact report launch for a charity organization.  This organisation works with food producers and supermarkets to help people in low income areas cope with and adapt to the challenges that they face. It also helps those communities transition into places where people want to live, raise children and grow old. Central to that organization’s work is the idea that people and communities have assets that with a little help can be mobilized to achieve these ends and that food facilitates this. Here is the broad text of my talk. I believe that adopting an approach that supports people and communities to be able to recognize what they already have is key toward moving beyond longer term transformation.

My mother has a saying—Freeze the momentContinue reading