Provision of food for the poor, has been the focus of a series of articles I’ve written considering how we can maintain wider sustainable living methods, while incorporating a humanitarian component. This is the fifth and final article of this series. This is certainly something to give some serious thought to because how can we expect to live sustainable lives without considering the needs of our fellow man?
To Help Others, Sometimes Means We Need To Carry Them
What is the point of having a planet that has been looked after, if we don’t do the same for the people inhabiting it? That being said, there are ways that companies can also contribute to this goal, and also other programs that call upon people who may be in a situation where they are asked to perform duties in return for welfare, or are serving time in community service or correctional facilities.
Last But Certainly Not The Least Important!
Once again, I am aware these ideas may be bordering on the unrealistic, but I don’t think there is any harm in putting it out there in the hopes that one day, this may be one of those notions that actually comes to fruition, if you’ll pardon the pun. If there was a way that we could work in unison, not just communities but countries working together to achieve great things, I put my vote in to at least try to make this work, or at the very least some version of it.
Can We Count On Companies To Do Their Fair Share?
If we as individuals, such as is suggested in a previous article, are doing our small bit and providing our meager help, imagine what a big company may be able to provide?
Many companies tend to be built on large properties, with a vast expanse of lawn or grass, with much of it unused and ripe for the planting of trees, shrubs and plants that would produce food.
How fantastic would it be to see the owners of these properties take on the challenge of turning their unused land into groves of trees, vegetable gardens and other food producing flora?
This Land For Beauty, This Land For Food
There’s no reason why they couldn’t still have an area devoted to making their site look pretty to visitors, but what about the rest of the place? There might be tons of room to do this. Might it be worth considering that they hold days when they harvest, perhaps even including their own employees in a working bee with the promise of a bonus, or a meal provided, to help tend the area? Perhaps even advertise for outsiders to come along and participate and even take some of it home with them. They might be a community minded company and choose to hire people to come and work in their designated produce area, effectively creating work.
Companies Can Contribute Too
Many companies give donations or sponsorship so this might be considered to be one of their contributions to the good of the community. I wonder if companies might even be convinced to provide a caretaker home within their property in which a person can live there on the condition that they tend to the produce area. Fanciful thoughts you may think I am offering, but at least I am giving it thought. I’m sure there are many other ideas that could be floated around to come up with solutions and practical ways to work with this concept and make it happen in reality.
Community Service, Work For Welfare and Prisons Are A Workforce
While I have so far been speaking of people, communities and companies providing a voluntary service towards helping bring about food for the poor, there are other systems that may also contribute their services and give back to themselves in fulfilling a basic human need.
That is the need to feel worthwhile, that a person is contributing to the world and perhaps leaving their mark in history. These systems I speak of include prisons or people who are doing community services in exchange for keeping out of prison.
Correctional Facilities That Correct Attitudes
The people who have been put in jail are those who may need attitude corrections in terms of changing how they see themselves, giving them ways to be productive and even skills to be re-employed once they are released, but in ways that make them feel good about themselves. Maybe the very reason they are in these facilities is because they have never had a chance to grow.
I realise there will be some prisoners who are not able to be redirected into doing something different with their lives, but for the larger number it would certainly be a worthwhile endeavour to attempt.
Hardened Criminals To Hard Yakka
The hardened criminals perhaps would be working for their food and board like people used to do, I believe that in many cases prisoners usually work at jobs inside and get paid a very small wage. I’m not sure whether that money goes on an account that they can use to purchase items they need or not, but with what they do, perhaps they can add in tending to community veggie gardens and fruit groves for those individuals that are not classed as dangerous. They could at least reduce the cost of feeding them by growing their own fruit and vegetables.
Much To Think About
I guess it would depend on what equipment was needed to viably maintain the production of food and how much of a risk it would be to themselves, other prisoners or the wardens as to whether or not this would be a usable idea or not. Of course this is merely supposition and I’m not naive enough to believe that there would not be many things to take into consideration in providing a safe working zone and one that does not offer opportunities of escape or to bring harm to anyone else.
I was thinking along the lines of low security prisoners working in the community gardens I have mentioned in my third article, but again, this is food for thought and would take a lot of planning. Those serving out their community service hours, or young offenders who have been placed in correctional centers are likely candidates for providing a source of able bodied people who might be ready and willing to change their lives by changing the way they interact with life.
The Welfare System Means Opportunity
Another opportunity to source people to be employed by the government in maintaining the trees and plants are those people who are obtaining money through welfare due to current unemployment. I don’t mean make it a compulsory idea of ‘no work, no pay’, but rather put it to people that it may help them find work more easily in the future, or provide a reward of paying for their courses to become re-skilled, or something similar, if they work in exchange for credits.
I realise there are many reasons why some people simply won’t be able to do this, but if those that can are given something worthwhile in their lives, they tend to have better self esteem and we may avoid many of these people becoming disheartened and losing hope.
Welfare Does Not Mean Fare Well, But Wellness Of Mind May Lead To Better Job Prospects
Being forced to ask for help can be an extremely degrading feeling for many people. There is a certain stigma attached to people who have no choice but to be part of the welfare system. This means that no matter what circumstances brought these people to have to rely on government handouts, they are always lumped into the same unforgiving basket.
Called bludgers, a waste of space, accused of being no good, of not wanting to work, taking the tax payers money, etc, etc. All very unkind and thoughtless comments from those who are more fortunate than others and who still happen to have secure employment. Because in this day and age, job security is very hard to come by and people are being forced daily to look elsewhere to earn a living, create their own income, or work outside what most people would call mainstream. I know this because I’ve been there myself, so by understanding this small fact, we will already have raised the Earth’s care factor a huge amount.
Say No To GMO, While We Are Caring For Our Poor
I’d like to end this article series here, although I’m sure that it has opened up some food for thought in terms of what COULD be done as opposed to what’s NOT being done. While looking to this future where everybody helps each other, let’s not forget that we still need to be maintaining as sustainable a lifestyle as we can. So while we are providing food for the poor, we must also make sure that it is being done in the most effective, but sustainable way. This means using heirloom seeds, because let’s face it, if we don’t try to start re-growing the original species of our food, that have been made specifically for our biological beings, we will lose all of that goodness forever and never be able to win it back. Genetically modified seeds and plants do not produce what we need for our bodies, they just mean that we can produce more, more and more so that the food goes around.
While I understand the reason why these practices are used, I do not see why we would need them if we start to use all of our spare land to become natural supermarkets for all. Spare produce should be sent to those places where their climate and soil conditions don’t support the growth of such food-producing plants and trees. Remember to use all green building tools, gardening equipment, natural pesticides, biodegradable materials or those made from natural substances, so that we may reduce the impact on the environment. Just imagine how beautifully lush and green our planet will be.
Thoughts anyone? Please leave them in the comment section below and remember these ideas are just that, ideas. They are not a plan, nor am I considering the notions to be the answer to this problem, there are many things to factor in.
Thank you for reading