What do you think of when I say ‘faith and health’? Maybe a congregation exercising together or changing their diet? How about members of a faith community visiting a Farmers Market and supporting local farmers?
That’s what Partners in Health and Wholeness is encouraging through its most recent outreach. On June 28, PHW set up at the Farmers Market on Elm and 8th Streets in Lumberton. The parking lot was filled with children and adults. NC Cooperative Extension staff flooded the market, guiding school-aged children to meet farmers and ask questions about fresh produce. I was proud of how the young people stepped up to have conversations with farmers and to sign a pledge to be healthier. PHW reached more than 30 individuals who agreed to make a change in their exercise, diet, or tobacco use.
Talking with farmers, consumers, and sharing health information filled up my day. People stopped by my table to pick up health materials or learn about health partners. Giveaways of free produce were a real winner. Some shoppers learned about unfamiliar produce, including one lady who passed by a type of squash because she hadn’t heard of it before. PHW had a chance to provide a pattypan squash to her and the farmer who grew it talked to her. We were all delighted to share recipes and talk about health.
PHW will be visiting various Farmers Markets within Anson, Montgomery, Richmond, Scotland, Robeson, Cumberland, Bladen, and Columbus Counties in the coming months. The next one will be July 19th at the Montgomery Farmer’s Market on Main Street in Troy.
–Joy Williams, PHW Regional Consultant
Partners in Health and Wholeness is an initiative of the NC Council of Churches. Please visit our website to view more resources on health and faith.