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Farmers Market fills void in Codman Square

Codman Square's Farmers Market is an initiative of the Codman Square Health Council. Organized by FAMILY Inc., the Health Council is the first of its kind in Codman Square and is made up of community organizations concerned with improving the health of the community.

Partners include the Codman Square Health Center, Caritas Carney Hospital, Codman Square Merchants Association, Codman Square Neighborhood Development Corporation, Greater Boston Center for Healthy Communities, BOLD Teens, Dorchester Reentry Center, Codman Square Neighborhood Council, Alliance for Healthy Tomorrow, PACT, Codman Academy Charter Public School, the Dorchester Neighborhood Service Center and is growing.

The Health Council developed a survey with the support of the Food Project to assess the demand for a farmers market in 2007. The results showed that the residents and families in Codman Square were enthusiastic about a Farmers Market and understood the need for this healthy resource in the community.

Now, we have three Massachusetts farms represented at the farmers market. Antonio, Matt and Nathan are wonderful farmers that help make the market more of an experience. They breakdown the seasons and what is available when and expose our community to new and rare vegetables and other produce.

The Codman Square Farmers Market is held at the Codman Square Health Center every Thursday from 4-7p.m. The BOLD Teens assist the farmers and really make the market intergenerational and educational.

The market dates are from July 13 to October 23. On Thursday, July 17, the market will have its big opening event and all are welcome. The market will be filled with delightful melodies, partners will be sharing community resources with the community and there will be plenty of recipes and sampling.

The Health Council is focused on three major health concerns: nutrition, fitness and violence.

The Codman Square Health Council has recently become a partner of the Boston Collaborative for Food and Fitness. Two of our youth have had the opportunity to travel to Phoenix and Detroit to learn about what is happening nationally with the Kellogg Foundation on health. They shared the initiatives taking place in our community and learned from others to bring ideas back home. Together we will be providing healthy alternatives and real opportunities to change mindsets and lifestyles in our community.

Cynthia Loesch is the president of the Codman Square Neighborhood Council and is a longime activist in the Codman Square community.