Students from all over the city of Newark came together to explore the issue of food security in a documentary supported by Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, Children’s Hospital of New Jersey, and RWJBarnabas Health’s Social Impact and Community Investment Practice. The documentary, Food For Thought: The Path to Food Security in Newark, raises awareness about how important it is for a city’s residents to have access to fresh, nutritious food.

Here is what we learned:

According to Darrell K. Terry Sr., President and CEO of ­Newark Beth Israel Medical Center and Children’s Hospital of New Jersey, food security is contingent upon three things:

  1. Understanding what healthy food is
  2. Being able to afford it
  3. Having convenient access to it

 

What happens if you don’t have food security?

Without convenient access to fresh, nutritious food you may ­suffer from:

A. Health problems like obesity and diabetes
B. An inability to concentrate on work and schoolwork

What is being done about it in Newark?

  • Urban agriculture is becoming more popular with groups and individuals growing organic produce in vacant lots throughout the city.
  • Several churches and nonprofit organizations ­operate soup kitchens and food pantries.
  • Supermarket chains, such as Whole Foods, Food ­Depot and ShopRite, have moved into the city, giving residents much-needed variety and access to ­healthier food choices.

Food For Thought: The Path to Food Security in Newark