- State Partner Supervisor: Shannon Whitewater
For information on how to volunteer with FoodCorps in Arizona, please contact Shannon.
Why Serve In Arizona?
Arizona is diverse in both landscape and culture. While many parts of Arizona experience winter snowfall, much of the state stays warm enough to grow crops year-round. Arizona’s warm desert climate is known for citrus, cotton, and lettuce production. Yuma and it’s surrounding area provide 90 percent of leafy vegetables grown in the United States during the winter months. Because perennial streams and rivers are rare, farmers and gardeners strive to find sustainable means for food production including water-harvesting and indigenous seed selection.
Arizona is diverse in culture as well. The state is home to 22 Indian tribes. The history and culture of each tribe shapes the local landscape in distinct ways. Because Arizona was at one point part of Mexico, Southern Arizona is still greatly influenced by Mexican culture. FoodCorps service members currently serve in five Native communities within the state, giving them a unique opportunity to learn the histories and address challenges of local communities. Arizona’s diverse landscape provides service members with a wide range of experiences providing them the space to learn about Native, Mexican and Southwestern food cultures while developing a deeper understanding of how to grow in this unusual climate.
The Johns Hopkins Center for American Indian Health, a division of the Bloomberg School of Public Health, partners with American Indian and Alaskan Native tribes to raise health awareness and prevent obesity, diabetes, and other diet-related diseases in the community.
Through its nutrition promotion initiative, the center:
- Supports indigenous foods knowledge, growth and re-introduction
- Prevents hunger and food insecurity
- Increases local food production, distribution and access
- Promotes healthy nutrition and fitness across the lifespan