Addie Rogers is a Criminal Justice and Political Science double major who is passionate about local and statewide community engagement. As a Student Government Vice President and Resident Assistant, Addie has drawn particular attention to the issue of food insecurity and unhealthy eating practices. In October she led a neighborhood-wide essential needs drive to stock the Bellarmine food pantry and Dare to Care regional warehouse. In November, she brought the Dare to Care Healthy Cooking courses to Bellarmine’s residence halls to help students in their nutrition and food waste practices. On the statewide level, Addie spent her winter break helping families impacted by tornado destruction in Mayfield, Kentucky by distributing food and resources at the local high school. Presently, Addie is working on building a satellite food pantry in the residence halls that would be more accessible on weekends and university breaks. She is also working on education-based advocacy on the topic of food insecurity and how people can get involved politically by contacting legislators about raising the minimum wage and a more community-based model for natural disaster relief. She is a true practitioner of social activism, and she will not rest until people’s basic needs are met.
As a college student, it can be extremely difficult to cook and prepare healthy meals. Most students want convenience but lack the time and skills needed to create healthy and nourishing meals. As a resident assistant, I recognize the lack of knowledge and accessibility to healthy meals that many students face. Luckily, Bellarmine University has a free food pantry that includes fresh produce and other food items. Despite having this pantry, however, I still found that students lacked the ability to effectively cook these items in a healthy and timely way. Upon realizing this issue, I decided to take action by partnering with a local organization called Dare to Care, which provides the goods used in food pantries across the city. Through my working with Dare to Care officials, I was able to bring healthy cooking classes to campus. This program not only provided lessons on cooking, meal prep, and nutrition, but it also served as an educational experience to understand the many resources our community provides. As a fellow, I would work with others in the cohort to improve the collaboration and accessibility of other programs, to assist in the growth in my community and others alike.