Everywhere we turn it seems like one dilapidated and forgotten house, shopping center or road is being torn up and pulled down. In these vacant spaces, seemingly overnight, new structures pop up – structures that are near replicas of their lot’s previous occupant. “Why not just keep what was there and fix it,” we ask ourselves? “Why abandon so much material – create so much waste – when you’re building almost the exact same thing?”
e.a.t. spots is the inaugural social venture created by e.a.t. (education, agriculture and technology), an Illinois-based non-profit that promotes and supports innovation in local food systems. In their own words, “e.a.t promotes new models of food production, processing, sales, and distribution to increase access to local, healthy, sustainable food throughout Chicago.”
Wanting to know more about e.a.t. spots, we reached out to e.a.t. project manager Alex Schultz. She was kind enough to answer some questions for us. According to Alex, e.a.t. spots was a collaborative initiative with StreetWise – a non-profit that assists with workforce development, and Fresh Picks, a home food delivery company.
The mission of e.a.t. spots is to increase access to and awareness of healthy, local food – for everyone. More than a food service provider, e.a.t. spots also delivers real, sustainable jobs for those who are seeking work or transitioning in the workforce. There are currently four e.a.t. spots located in downtown Chicago (two of which Lifeway sponsors!), but their ultimate goal is to be in every neighborhood in Chicago.
Lifeway is a proud partner of e.a.t. spots, as our missions naturally fit together. We both support local farmers and suppliers and share the vision of creating nutritious, delicious food products that people can feel good eating and feel better by eating.
Want to know more about e.a.t. spots? They’re always excited to hear from the community! Visit one of the four e.a.t. spots locations (we suggest the ones on Madison and Wacker or Randolph Street, but we’re a bit bias…) or check out eat-spots.com. They’re also on Facebook and Twitter.
Even better: #GivingTuesday is the December 2 this year. If you’re looking for a non-profit/charity to support, think about e.a.t. spots!