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Feeding a California Community

With her Oakland-based nonprofit People's Grocery, Nikki Henderson is leading more than just a food revolution.

When it opened its doors a decade ago, People’s Grocery was one of the only local food programs in West Oakland, a low-income neighborhood full of liquor stores and devoid of fresh produce. Today, it serves a diverse community through weekly fruit and veggie box sales, weekly neighborhood parties in the rooftop garden, and a fellowship program that leads participants to their dream jobs in food-related health and wellness organizations.The nonprofit’s executive director, 28-year-old Nikki Henderson, is a food justice pioneer, fighting for the right of all communities to have access to fresh, healthy food.  Spirituality & Health  spoke with Henderson about building her organization in a food desert, creating an urban garden, and reimagining the “good old boy network” for low-income people of color.How has the area around People’s Grocery evolved since it first opened?In the last 10 years, West Oakland has gone through an interesting transformation. There was a convergence of public works money coming into the community, so Bay Area Rapid Transit stations were redeveloped. Some low-income ho …

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