Hip Hop is Green Health & Wellness Project
Hip Hop is Green (HHIG) is a Seattle-based pioneering movement led by a team of artists, performers, chefs, and activists that use the power and influence of Hip Hop to speak to youth and spark positive health and wellness changes in their lives. As the world’s most popular genre and art form, Hip Hop encompasses an entire culture that goes beyond music, hugely influencing politics, racial and social issues, health and wellness, culture and society as a whole.
We focus on raising consciousness through food justice activism, environmentalism, and experiential programs and positive messaging that resonates with youth and Hip Hop fans of all ages. For the younger generation, Hip Hop Culture is a powerful force and by moving Hip Hop in a “green” direction-towards (sustainability as well as health & wellness for themselves and the planet), ultimately the world will move in a green direction. Hip Hop is Green provides powerful, life changing programs for underserved, low income urban youth and their families. We are the pioneers in this new Green Age of Hip Hop and we make being healthy cool to youth people and families.
Since being founded in 2009 by Seattle native Keith Tucker, Hip Hop Is Green has been a health and wellness leader through our comprehensive programs and live events. This proposal will cover our program which is called the Hip Hop is Green Health & Wellness Project, which includes 5 components we will outline below:
1. The Hip Hop Green Dinner,
2. 10th Element of Hip Hop Speaker Series (in 2016 HHIG introduced the 10th Element asbeing Health & Wellness),
3. Hip Hop is Green Urban Farm restoration project,
4. Youth based Culinary Anthropology Cooking Classes & Food Fight Curriculum
1. Hip Hop Green Dinner
We will host the Hip Hop is Green Dinner which features a sit down plant based meal curated by the youth culinary program students with food from our urban farm with discussions and performances by local and national hip hop artists, health experts and celebrities. Our aim is to inspire and empower youth and families to live healthier lives. We will feature chef demos, nurse stations with health tips, many food booths offering amazing vegan food and well as yoga and fitness talks and demos.
2. Hip Hop is Green Urban Farm Restoration Project
Our Teaching Farm (Hip Hop is Green Farm) is located on 19th and Cherry is a 12 month program that will establish a community hub that brings together youth interns and the community to build a farm under the mentorship of master farmers. The youth and community will be involved in designing the garden, plant selection, propagating plants, prepping the land, composting, gardening techniques, building raised beds, and maintenance including watering and weeding and harvesting. Two special projects will be undertaken by volunteers: building a greenhouse and a clay and stone pizza oven. We will grow food during all four seasons. The farm will be a resource that will provide food and teach people gardening and farming skills that they can incorporate into their lives. Our vision is to sustain our urban farm after the grant cycle ends, create a food-secure community and eventually have the community create more gardens/urban farms, sidewalk gardens and also work with public schools on school gardens that use their own produce in their food program.
3. Youth based Culinary Anthropology Cooking Classes
Our Culinary Anthropology program is a six-week series of cooking and nutrition classes that focuses on build healthier food systems that are equitable, healthy and empowering by bringing the community together through good food and exploring global food culture - which has abundant ways to use locally grown food, and uses food to bring people together. These classes enable youth to master culinary techniques and budget friendly recipes to make healthy, culturally relevant, home cooked meals. By eating and drinking healthier and incorporating a more holistic plant based approach including more fruits and vegetables, youth have a lower risk for diet-related diseases like obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer. They also create more food security for themselves and their families by learning where to source food, how to work together within their community to harness better food quality while stretching their food dollars. Additionally, the youth interns will be involved in developing the menus for the Hip Hop Green Dinner and Farm Dedication Party. The menus will be inspired by the produce grown at the farm. We will encourage the youth to teach what they have learned through hosting cooking classes for their peers and community members. Our course includes having youth research and discuss what sugary drinks do to the human body, how it impacts their health, what chemicals are in soda, demonstrate how much sugar is in popular beverages and how it is marketed to young people using hip hop and sports stars. In our classes we will teach them to create their own healthy beverages including juice, water based fruit beverage or smoothies.
The students will take what they learn and will give presentations to their peers and have a Q&A discussion session. The entire project will be documented and filmed to create a video that illustrates and highlights our success with the community.
4. Speakers Symposium (Speaker Panel)
The symposium is grounded in the backdrop of the 10th Element of Hip Hop: Health & Wellness and explores how young people and their families can benefit from taking part in this new health paradigm. Many young people are faced with severe health issues and hip-hop culture is responding to those needs by informing and inspiring a whole new generation to make health and wellness a priority in their lives by speaking in a language they all understand to move them in a positive direction through our empowering events.
The Symposium seeks to shift consciousness through exploring hip hop culture in the context of health and wellness. We also discuss the power of art, music and culture to influence and heal our community as well as the importance of connecting with the land through exploring nature, gardening and farming. This communal gathering provides celebrity role models, experts and vital information to further strengthen and empower those who want to take control of their health.