Georgia Farmers Market Association partners with Georgia Tech's Serve-Learn-Sustain Initiative
The Georgia Farmers Market Association (GFMA) exists to promote healthy communities by connecting people to local food systems. GFMA launched the Just Food movement with the mission to provide a genuine community experience around local food. In support of that mission, Georgia Institute of Technology students are participating in the Just Food pop up in-order to gain insight on the role food markets play in the community. The students are members of a class in Universal Design for Community Health, focusing on how food, social engagement, and activity can promote healthy communities. This course is part of a broader campus-wide effort referred to as Serve-Learn-Sustain (SLS) that examines community issues from an interdisciplinary perspective. Like GFMA, Georgia Tech and the SLS students are committed to facilitating a deeper understanding of sustainable communities through education and experiences. Participants are introduced to key partners in the Atlanta community, under the umbrella of specific community development themes. Using classrooms, workshops, and various local activities, students become involved in the local community in ways that will hopefully continue for years to come.
In addition to broad-based experiences, faculty and students delve more deeply into community health through individual classes, both at the undergraduate and graduate school level, as well as across disciplines. Universal Design for Community Health is one such class exploring the implications of human ability on the design of places, products, and systems related to the built environment. The ultimate design goal is to alleviate any barriers to individual access to, and enjoyment of these environments, including food markets. By partnering with GFMA, students engage in solving real world problems. Using this universal design approach, students learn how to design for social engagement and community health.