For our June Communtiy Conversation, we spoke with Heidi Hertz, the Assistant Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry for the Office of Governor Ralph S. Northam. She spoke to us about the Governor’s Children’s Cabinet, Virginia Blueprint to End Hunger, Urban Agricutlure, and FeedVA programs across the Commonwealth of VA.
Governor’s Children’s Cabinet
- Governor Northam issued Executive Order No. 11 reestablishing the Children’s Cabinet June 21, 2018.
- Priorities are early childhood development and school readiness, nutrition and food security, systems of care and safety for school-aged youth.
- Children’s Cabinet will work to develop goals, identify strategies, and measure impact and outcomes.
Blueprint to End Hunger
Outline action steps and policy recommendations for achieving childhood food security.
- Shared vision for food access equity in Virginia, quantifiable goals, scope of the problem, and policy recommendations to bringing together solutions and strategies in healthcare, agriculture, and education.
- The report would align priorities and provide a roadmap for action, implementation, and evaluation over the next 3 years.
Urban Agriculture – Creating an Urban Agriculture Census
–Research urban agriculture nationwide and in Virginia
–Compile a directory of urban agriculture locations and organizations
–Review datasets pertaining to school and community gardening and overlap/gaps
–Conduct a scan of how other states support urban agriculture (legislation, funding, etc)
- Created by the Council on Bridging the Nutritional Divide
- Virginia Food Access Network (VFAN) launched May 2017
–Provide data clearinghouse
–Connect food system
–Share best practices/resources