HUGO, MN – The Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee (MNSBHC) Legacy Fund today awarded Dream of Wild Health, a 10-acre organic farm in Hugo, a $50,000 grant to implement a teaching kitchen. The kitchen will allow the farm to offer new programs centered on reconnecting Native American youth and families with the culinary, spiritual and medicinal uses of Indigenous plants. Dream of Wild Health will offer training and certifications on sustainable, healthy food preparation and farming. The kitchen also supports its mission to address issues related to systemic poverty and disease and promote positive economic and self-sufficient food preparation and sourcing options for Native American families.
The grant is part of the Super Bowl Legacy Grant Program, which is made possible each year by a $1 million contribution courtesy of the NFL Foundation and is complemented by the Super Bowl Host Committee. Through its 52 Weeks of Giving campaign, the MNSBHC launched a year-long effort to make Super Bowl LII a statewide event by awarding 52 communities with grants that will help improve the health and wellness of young people in Minnesota.
Dream of Wild Health hosted the MNSBHC and local children and families today at an event to celebrate the grant dedication. Participants were invited to farm and learn about Native American cooking techniques and Indigenous planting.
“The addition of a teaching kitchen is crucial to the long-term health of our community,” said Diane Wilson, executive co-director of Dream of Wild Health. “We teach Native American youth and families within the greater Twin Cities area about the significance of our traditional foods in reclaiming food sovereignty for our communities. By learning at our farm how to grow and prepare these foods, we help to preserve this important part of our culture, and support Native families in becoming more self-sustaining. We are very excited about the programs we can offer as part of this investment in our teaching kitchen.”
Dream of Wild Health is a Native-led nonprofit that has owned and operated the 10-acre organic farm since 2005, in addition to providing community-based educational programs in Minneapolis and St. Paul from the urban office. The Native board of directors, staff and chefs are committed to the long-term viability of the farm in Hugo, Minn. “Dream of Wild Health is one of the most innovative nonprofits in the fight to restore Native Americans’ dietary health” said Charles R. Vig, chairman of the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community. “Our tribe has supported its work in the past, and we are glad to join the Super Bowl Legacy Fund in supporting this landmark expansion.”
The farm is expanding its programs to provide access to healthy foods, including growing Indigenous seeds, developing a community-based food hub, more cooking programs, and providing an Indigenous Food Share for Native families. The teaching kitchen will support this effort with the development of value-added foods that will provide sustainable, economic opportunities for the farm and Native families.
“To visit this farm and learn about the cultural beginnings of farming and sustainable food sourcing and its importance to the Native American community is inspiring,” said Dana Nelson. “Creating an environment where young people can learn to plant, grow and prepare healthy food is critical to the Legacy Fund’s vision of improving the health of Minnesota’s children. We are so pleased to contribute to the ongoing efforts of Dream of Wild Health.”
The Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee is a private, nonprofit corporation formed to plan and execute Super Bowl LII. For more information visit www.mnsuperbowl.com and follow @mnsuperbowl2018 on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat.