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The New Public Charge

The Dallas Coalition for Hunger Solutions partnered with the City of Dallas Office of Welcoming Communities and Immigrant Affairs to organize a webinar presentation on The Public Charge: The New Rule.

You can find the presentation at the links below. We hope you gain a better understanding of who would be subjected to the rule (if/when it goes into effect) and how to address the chilling effect that the anticipation of the rule has created.

A copy of the slides can be found here and the audio is here

8th Annual Dallas Hunger Summit

The 2019 Dallas Hunger Summit had yet another incredible turnout this year with a sold-out audience at the Briscoe Carpenter Livestock Center in Fair Park! This half-day event brought together individuals and representatives from over 200+ businesses, nonprofit organizations, diverse faith communities, education and healthcare systems, social service agencies, and philanthropic and government entities.

This year’s theme, Going from Hunger to Health: Building a Healthier Environment, focused on creating equitable communities and building a healthier environment for all.

Our first keynote speaker, Dr. Yvette Wingate, Health Equity Coordinator for Tarrant County Public Health, set the tone for the summit by engaging the audience to look at food access and community health through an equity lens. She examined the role of social determinants hindering health equity and conveyed the need to serve groups affected by health disparities with cultural humility. She explored innovative solutions from local, state and national best practices that aim to put health equity in action through healthy food access. You can view her entire presentation here: Looking at Healthy Food Access and Community Health through an Equity Lens, and Innovative Solutions from Local, State and National Best Practices

Following Dr. Wingate’s presentation, a distinguished panel of strategists from DHA Housing Solutions for North Texas, St. Paul Children’s Foundation, Child Poverty Action Lab, AARP Texas and City of Dallas shined a light on the policies, infrastructure and systems needed, with some already underway, in communities to advance collaborative steps to assure access to healthy food and optimal health for all. You can learn who the panelists were and access their slides here: Building a Healthier Environment: Policy, Infrastructure, and Systems

Yolanda Perez, DCHS Leadership Team Alumni member engaged the audience in exploring each of the DCHS Action Teams through the Passport to Community Wellness activity. This activity gave the audience not only a chance to learn how to get involved with DCHS Action Team hunger solutions, but also for the raffle drawing to win a copy of Jeremy Everett’s new book, I Was Hungry: Cultivating Common Ground to End an American Crisis.

The next segment of the conference focused on highlighting the role of the upcoming 2020 Census as a tool for creating equitable communities. Valerie Hawthorne PhD, Government Relations Director for the North Texas Food Bank, opened with an overview of public charge and the impact of food insecurity in North Texas. See her presentation here: Public Charge and Why the Census Matters to Food Insecurity

Our second keynote speaker, Arturo Vargas, CEO of both NALEO Educational Fund and the National Association of Latino Elected Officials, engaged the audience in understanding the Census by discussing overview, implications, and the basis for success in 2020. You can view his entire presentation here: The Census as a Tool for Creating Equitable Communities. The NALEO website is full of Census 2020 resources that organizations can access at their convenience. You can find them here: Make Yourself Count

Edward Turner, Census Coordinator for City of Dallas, shared ways to work in the community to help ensure a successful count; see his slides: 2020 Dallas Census Implementation: How You Can Help!

Our closing speaker, Jeremy Everett, the Executive Director of Texas Hunger Initiative, left the audience with a call to action through an impactful and motivational message remarking on the injustice of food insecurity and that surely, we can do better to extend a hand to our hungry neighbors.

All in all, this year’s Dallas Hunger Summit brought together amazing experts from diverse backgrounds to galvanize the conversation of how we can unite our different talents, resources and experiences to empower our fellow community members go from hunger to health, through collective impact and strategy to build a healthier environment for all.

A special acknowledgement to Wyonella Henderson-Greene, Coalition Coordinator, for making it possible for the Hunger Summit to be as great as it was.

This piece contributed to the blog by Elizabeth Au, Texas Hunger Initiative AmeriCorps VISTA member.

What is Food Insecurity?

The 7th Annual Dallas Hunger Summit Sets Record Attendance!

The 2018 Dallas Hunger Summit had record attendance with over 260 at the Briscoe Carpenter Livestock Center in Fair Park! Participants represented community sectors including education, social service, business, health, faith and government.

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This year’s theme, Going from Hunger to Health, shaped the discussion on how access to healthy food is an important issue for children, families and households in our community. Hunger Summit speakers and attendees explored the connections between hunger, nutrition and health and the implications for our healthcare system in North Texas.

The opening speaker, Dr. Donald Wesson, President of Baylor Scott & White Health and Wellness Center, set the collaborative tone for the day. In charging the audience to assume responsibility for our community’s health, he exhorted, “It takes a village to raise a child, it takes a village to do population health.” You can see his entire presentation here: Assuming Accountability for a Healthier Community

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Wende Burton, Senior Philanthropy Director for the Communities Foundation of Texas, followed with a presentation on the Dallas Economic Opportunity Assessment. She examined the factors in this report that are contributing to an increase in poverty and income inequality in Dallas County, and their intersection with health. View her presentation here: Dallas Economic Opportunity Assessment

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A panel of strategists from area health and hospital systems – UT Southwestern, Parkland, Methodist, Baylor Scott & White and Children’s Health – discussed what they’re seeing as a result of food insecurity and malnutrition in their patient populations.  The audience also learned about what they’re doing to address the health implications.

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A highlight of the event was the reveal of the Dallas Community Food Assessment Map. This new online tool, available here http://dallashungersolutions.org/dallas-community-food-assessment-map/, compiles data about income, health, food retail, community gardens, farmers markets and supplemental meal sources into an interactive map. Heather Lepeska, City of Dallas Office of Economic Development, introduced and demonstrated the benefits of this innovative tool to the community for the first time at this year’s Hunger Summit. See her presentation here: Dallas Community Food Assessment Map,

Valerie Hawthorne PhD, Government Relations Director for the North Texas Food Bank, provided a lesson in Understanding and Impacting Hunger Policy. See her presentation here: Understanding and Impacting Hunger Policy

The event closed with remarks from Steve Love, President and CEO of the DFW Hospital Council. His presentation, an overview of the impact of food insecurity on the north Texas healthcare system, can be found here: Impact of Food Insecurity on the North Texas Healthcare System

This year’s Dallas Hunger Summit brought together amazing experts and practitioners who instructed, challenged and inspired the audience to do all that it could to address hunger and promote health through collaboration and innovation.

This piece contributed to the blog by Wyonella Henderson-Greene, Coalition Coordinator

Urban gardeners come together to partner and learn!

The Urban Agriculture Action Team and GROW North Texas held a free urban gardening workshop at the end of June. Anyone interested in starting an urban garden or already cultivating a garden project, but still had questions, was invited to attend.

Over 40 participants networked and partnered with other urban gardeners at Owenwood Farm and Neighbor Space during a hands-on, in-garden experience. Eager to dig in the dirt, they arrived for an early start and by the end of the morning had built 6 raised beds from the ground up for a teaching garden at Owenwood.

In the process, they learned about maximizing soil for growing success, planting with transplants, mulching options and brewing compost tea. When all was said and done, attendees had acquired skills to boost their chances of future gardening success and received free seeds, too!

A free follow-up workshop that will prepare novices for a fall garden at your home or community garden will be held on August 25th at Owenwood Farm. The workshop is aimed at those just getting started, but anyone is welcome to come and brush up on knowledge!

Please register so that we know you’re coming! https://grownorthtexas.org/event-3026021

~Wyonella Henderson-Greene, Coalition Coordinator

Owenwood box build 1

Owenwood boxes