Associated Baptist Press – Rooftop farm an urban oasis in NYC

Associated Baptist Press – Rooftop farm an urban oasis in NYC.

The paradigm shift not only brought more guests into the pantry, but more guests are turning into volunteers. “A lot of what we can celebrate is that we’ve almost done a complete 180 with our pantry,” Henkel said. “We’ve found ways where we can still be efficient but provide dignity to our guests.”

Sherouse sees the farm as a church entity, but its primary purpose is not to increase the Sunday-morning crowd. “We’re very content to throw our resources into something that is focused on serving the community, whether or not it increases our Sunday attendance,” Sherouse said. “If that happens organically, that’s a wonderful thing.”

Yet with the rooftop farm literally being in the public eye for thousands of people in surrounding apartment, office and high-rise buildings, it is prominent advertising in itself.

“I think of it as public witness,” said Sherouse. “It has given people another point of entry to our church and community ministry and our understanding of the gospel.” Sherouse describes it as “public theology.”

Building on Metro’s success, Sherouse said he would like to see more urban farms in his neighborhood. “We think this is a replicable model,” he said. “In the grand scheme, we hope that Metro’s farm will be the initial site of many rooftop farms started by the Hell’s Kitchen Farm Project.”

Drug-Resistant Gonorrhea: How We Lost Track | Wired Science |

Drug-Resistant Gonorrhea: How We Lost Track | Wired Science | Not so nice Friday but important nonetheless… SuperBug Reporter: “if I were starting this blog today, I’d be tempted to name it the Department of Unintended Consequences. So much of what I write about seems to belong in that zone: Send UN troops to Haiti, start a cholera epidemic. Aim to eradicate wild polio, clear the way for the vaccine-derived kind. Drive down the price of producing animal protein, ramp up antibiotic resistance.

Now add to the list: Develop cheap rapid tests for detecting sexually transmitted diseases, and lose the ability to track that those diseases are becoming resistant to the last antibiotics that work reliably against them.”

Afghan Women’s Writing Project | Daughter of War

Afghan Women’s Writing Project | Daughter of War.

I am a daughter of war.
When I was born,

The war was going on.
The sky was dark.
The houses were broken.
The weather was dusty.
The trees were seared.

There was no plant,
No awake human,
No tears in the eyes left.

The streets were covered
By dead human bodies;
The blood was like a river
In the street, house and everywhere.

I didn’t consider failure.
I was full of hope;
I could see

Green places, a blue sky,
Smiles on everyone’s face, tall buildings,
A book in my hand,

Sitting under the tree,
Studying with my parents and siblings,
In my dreams.


War never gave this chance.
War took my parents from us.
War took my book

And gave me burqa;
They put me in the jail of burqa.
War forbade me from going outside.

War changed my beautiful land
To the worst place in the world.
War changed our smiles to tears.

War made our dreams
Of going to school,
Freedom of speech,
To be just a dream.


I will try.
I will stand for my right.
I will break the silence.
I will show my power.
And I will bring peace
In my country once again.

I promised.

There will be no more war;
I will make my dreams come true.

Once again,
My homeland will be like heaven
And my people will be happy.

By Zahra A.

Anti-GM activists urged not to trash wheat field – by “scientists” The Guardian

Anti-GM activists urged not to trash wheat field | UK news | The Guardian.

“Scientists” plea makes me think of “scientists” wanting to continue unethical, or immoral experiments on humans because of all the time they had expended. The trashing of their work may well be the only way humans can defend themselves.  I don’t think these “scientists” have given much thought to what evil they might do in their attempt to “improve” industrialized and profit-only oriented agriculture.

Work in Germany – a nightmare for Bulgarians | Presseurop (English)

Work in Germany – a nightmare for Bulgarians | Presseurop (English)One case of abuse was revealed in Frankfurt by the Migrant Counselling Centre of the German Trade Union Confederation when Ali S. and D. Hyusein, two Bulgarians of Turkish descent, stepped forward. They had worked for six weeks at a construction site, they reported, and part of their salary was still being withheld. From early March to mid-April, each of them had worked 349.5 hours. They should have received €4,526.03 gross, but were paid only €1,200.

Only rarely, though, are such cases ever fought in the Labour Court or even pursued by police and prosecutors. Most Bulgarians are not willing to testify against those who give them work – out of fear.

How advanced the market in Bulgarian workers has become has also been noted by the municipal housing authorities. Several years ago the Frankfurt Housing Agency observed that landlords were renting more and more rooms in flats to Romanians and Bulgarians. The often substandard dwellings were rented out at lucrative rates, exploiting the vulnerable south-eastern Europeans in need.

Looks good, not sure I can find all ingredients here but will try…

The Gaza Kitchen

I had many requests to post the recipe for Gaza’s Kishik Stew, which I made the other day as a special treat for my mother, who has been requesting it for weeks now, and posted on Facebook.

Let me preface this by saying I used to detest Kishik. It was one of those things I thought you either hated or loved, and I concluded that I hated it-dried kishik itself is pretty pungent stuff (especially the Lebanese variety), and since we eat as much with our eyes and noses as we do with our mouths, its hard for our senses to imagine what a finished meal would taste like. Then I tried kishik stew at Hajja Um Ibrahim’s in Gaza. And again at my cousin’s house in Davis, California (shout out to khalto Nawal!), and I was won over…

A little culinary history lesson: Kishik is a sun-dried mixture of…

View original post 806 more words

Farm Bill 2012 – Senate Version | Eat Drink Better

Farm Bill 2012 – Senate Version | Eat Drink Better.

Unthinkable to put some 50 million on a forced diet and cut funding to food banks at same time! Much of the Farm Bill is focused on food assistance, either directly or indirectly. Food stamps (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) will be reduced, with an average of $90 less monthly benefit per household. The current average benefit is $287 per month. This would amount to a nearly 25% reduction in grocery money for about 49 million Americans.

Why Afghan Women Risk Death to Write Poetry –

Why Afghan Women Risk Death to Write Poetry –

Like many of the rural members of Mirman Baheer, a women’s literary society based in Kabul, the girl calls whenever she can, typically in secret. She reads her poems aloud to Amail, who transcribes them line by line. To conceal her poetry writing from her family, the girl relies on a pen name, Meena Muska. (Meena means “love” in the Pashto language; muska means “smile.”)

Meena lost her fiancé last year, when a land mine exploded. According to Pashtun tradition, she must marry one of his brothers, which she doesn’t want to do. She doesn’t dare protest directly, but reciting poetry to Amail allows her to speak out against her lot. When I asked how old she was, Meena responded in a proverb: “I am like a tulip in the desert. I die before I open, and the waves of desert breeze blow my petals away.” She wasn’t sure of her age but thought she was 17. “Because I am a girl, no one knows my birthday,” she said.

Noa: darkness falls upon the land

Noa: darkness falls upon the land.

My friends, I am writing all this to you because it is important that you know that Israel is now going thorough one of the darkest periods of her short history. The amount of brainwashed people walking the streets here, the amount of RACISM and blind hatred, is simply mindboggling (and this goes for both the Jewish and the Arab population within Israel). I am but one of a long list of people and organizations with views similar to mine who have been bashed, banned, ostracized, ridiculed and marginalized, virtually OUTLAWED, since the present right-wing government has been in office. AN entire country has turned to talking in slogans, our minds have become little advertising sound-bits: we’re right, they’re wrong, they’re terrorists, we’re angels, god’s on our side, we did everything for peace, they refused, it’s their fault, there’s no partner, you’re either with us or against us etc etc ect. The ensuing witch hunt, evoking medieval times, an Israeli take on McCarthyism, is a dangerous slippery slope that will lead Israel straight to oblivion. SO, to all you Jewish/Israeli friends and family, I urge you, do not blindly support anything and everything Israel does! In such you are contributing to her demise! Rather, strengthen the sane, the humane, the caring and loving!

Tribal Farming Beats Climate Change – IPS

Tribal Farming Beats Climate Change – IPS

For Harish Saraka and other subsistence farmers in 70 Niyamgiri villages in Rayagada, adapting to changing conditions meant reverting to traditional farming methods such as mixed cropping, the use of organic fertilisers and trusted seed varieties.

So, while farming has been failing elsewhere in Odisha, Harish Saraka has been cultivating not three but 14 crops on his half-hectare land since the last two years – enough to see his family through the lean August-December season.

“I now harvest 300 kg of food grains, a 200 percent increase from the earlier single-crop high-yield paddy farming,” says Saraka.

In Kerandiguda village, Loknath Nauri, 58, is the first to try mixed farming on a portion of his one-hectare hilly stream-fed land that he got under a government programme for the landless rural poor.

“Seeing my good harvest, ten other households here have decided to try their luck this year,” says Nauri, who is ready to share his seeds with them.

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