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Welcoming our 2021-2022 Americorps VISTA!

Updated: Nov 2, 2021

Hello Everyone! Community Roots has some special news that we would love to share with y'all. We would like to formally welcome our new VISTA member into our Community Roots family. The VISTA member that is serving the 2021-2022 year with us is Sydney Strite!

Sydney grew up in a small town, about three hours away from Mount Vernon, in Southeastern Ohio. Her family always had very strong ties to the community, gardening, and delicious recipes that she learned from her grandmothers. These kinds of engagements, even as a young child, helped motivate Sydney in continuing her love and passion for homegrown food, food access, and justice for all of humankind. Poverty and food insecurity is something that we all have been surrounded with, and Sydney hopes that with her year of service with us, she can create a sustainable impact on this community.

Sydney continued to study and learn about nutrition, poverty, and food injustice during her time at Ohio University where she obtained a bachelor's degree in food and nutrition sciences. Throughout her years in college, Sydney interned on her very first farm, helped organize student-run farmers markets, and cooked fresh meals for her campus' food pantry. This allowed her to gain healthier food access, ties to the community, so much knowledge, and many skills that she can carry with her for the rest of her days. Her primary focus during her time in school was to focus all of the information she had learned and apply it to her own life and the lives of others.

Since Sydney has graduated, she has dedicated her time with the Americorps VISTA program to continue the fight against poverty. Her first VISTA position was with a farm in Columbus, Ohio, named Franklinton Farms. Once her summer term had ended, she was eager to get back on the saddle and continue serving America and fighting poverty. She began searching for an available position to continue her service and was referred to the opportunity here at Community Roots.

We all are extremely excited to have Sydney onboard with us this year! Just now beginning her year of service, Sydney is most excited about being able to use her creativity to solve problems while continuing to learn something new every day.

Since joining us, Sydney has looked forward to getting more volunteers engaged with us and our mission. She is currently working on meeting with local school organizations and universities to help sustain our volunteer force. One thing that Sydney enjoys is hearing from the volunteers and from people who are interested in joining us. She wants to welcome you all to email her at any time with questions, ideas, or interests that you may have about our program. She loves getting to meet and network with people that share similar values and passions as she does. Communication and networking are something that Sydney believes help inspire creative and new ideas to all different parts of life, both professional and personal.

Sydney is also helping us with our Farm to School Implementation grant and programming. Grant work has always been a skill that has interested Sydney and she is excited to start gaining an understanding of the operations and tools needed to create successful grants. This work is not easy and has already shown its challenges, but Sydney is eager and motivated to persevere through these difficult times and create a sustainable outcome for everyone involved, especially our community.

We would like to thank you for helping us welcome Sydney into our community and taking the time to chat with us. Sydney is looking forward to hopefully meeting and speaking to you all sometime soon! She is positive we all can learn so much from one another during this next year together.

The shorter the chain between raw food and fork, the fresher it is and the more transparent the system is - Joel Salatin

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