Climate Café Kid’s Kitchen: A Report

We hope you enjoy this guest article by Rev. Bonnie Fackre-Cochise of Christ the Healer UCC about  Climate Café Kid’s Kitchen, an exciting way to get young people involved in regenerative, sustainable eating.

Climate Café’s Kid’s Kitchen is not a spin-off—and it is not an offshoot—of Climate Café, but it is an integral effort to include children and young people in the leadership of our wonderful events. Since it is younger generations who will be inheriting the damage that we adults have done to our planet (yes, let’s take responsibility!), we feel a responsibility to undo some of that damage and support those coming after us.

The Kid’s Kitchen is a “ground-to-plate,” or a “farm-to-table,” attempt to hand over some of the knowledge keys that Christ the Healer, Grace Garden, and Acres of Abundant Grace have garnered over the years—about regenerative farming and low-carbon-footprint food consumption.

The idea was inspired by Youth Minister Amy Norden of Cedar Hills UCC in Beaverton, who approached us with a request to locate where she might take her children and families the first week in August to learn some of these things. The upshot is that she and Pastor Mary Sue Evers went to Canby to tour Jim and Alice’s farm, and several August dates were pinned down when their folks will be coming there to volunteer. An Aug. 5 noon pop- up event was also scheduled at Cedar Hills UCC with a youth-led follow up Sunday discussion in church.

Meanwhile, inspired by the energy, I approached the Lutheran congregation of which I am also a member, to see if we could do something similar there in September. Amazingly, folks were in accord. On Mar. 30, a mixture of seven Christ the Healer UCC and Prince of Life ELCA adults and seven kids showed up to tour the farm. The group plated three new beds of vegetable starts that Jim had already nurtured into being. On Apr. 15, another small group—one child and four adults—arrived there to look at the worms and plant another three beds. We are planning a May 13 date, to again do some planting there and to learn Jim’s special garden inoculation recipe with bio char.

The first planning meeting for a September pop-up—to be cheffed and prepped by the kids at Prince of Life —is happening on Zoom at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, May 3.

Sarah Wheeler, Annie Sakaguchi, and Karen Steiner, each of whom are on the Prince of Life Church Council have greatly encouraged this Climate Café Kid’s Kitchen outreach. Several Prince of Life members are signed up to volunteer at Eloheh this Saturday. In addition, we are going to plant the fifteen Berkeley Medley Heirloom tomato starts that Jim has donated to Prince of Life’s organic garden.

So things are happening. Keep the Climate Café Kid’s Kitchen in your thoughts and prayers. And join us!!

For the Love of All Creation!