Atlanta food forest becomes a resource for those in need amid the pandemic

Millions of Americans live in food deserts across the country, places known to be without affordable and healthy food options. The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that 19 million people in the U.S. are more than 1 mile from the nearest grocery store in urban areas, and more than 10 miles away from a grocery store in a rural area. 

Free food forests are popping up across the country to combat this problem. The largest free food forest in the nation is in an Atlanta community that needs it most.

Browns Mill food forest sits on more than 7 acres of land. Years from now, the land will produce tons of fruits and vegetables for the community.

Celeste Lomax, food forest volunteer and community member, said her community has lacked healthy food for years.

Celeste Lomax describes the 7 acres of land that the Browns Mill Forest sits on. (Source/FNC Jayla Whitfield) 

Celeste Lomax describes the 7 acres of land that the Browns Mill Forest sits

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How Penn State HealthWorks, peer educators provide aid to students throughout pandemic | University Park Campus News

Staying healthy has become more important than ever before at Penn State — both mentally and physically. While they’re not a stranger to campus, the university’s HealthWorks is striving to keep students at their best.

From stress and sleep to nutrition, HealthWorks provides students with a variety of health aid.

Penn State’s HealthWorks is a group of peer educators who are co-led by Katelyn Quick, a clinical dietician for Penn State Health Promotion and Wellness, and Erin Raupers, assistant director for Penn State Health Promotion and Wellness.

Split into two categories with peer educators, Quick focuses on outreach while Raupers takes on one-on-one student appointments. The overall goal for the program is to empower students to engage in healthy behavior and to advocate for a healthy Penn State community.

“I really feel strongly that health and wellness has to do with a holistic, whole-body approach,” Quick said.

Now held via

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Gym owners still adjusting to shift in fitness industry created by the pandemic

CLEVELAND — The first of the year is usually when many gyms and fitness centers record a spike in new memberships. Oftentimes New Year’s resolutions involve more exercise or people looking to drop a few pounds. But, that surge of people rushing to the gym to get fit isn’t happening in 2021.

Instead, gym owners are dealing with lower attendance rates because of the pandemic. COVID-19 cases nationwide are keeping people at home and managing their physical fitness there.

“It’s been so stressful for people and it’s really wearing people down,” said Linda McVey, the executive director of health initiatives, at the YMCA of Greater Cleveland.

McVey said the YMCA had fewer new memberships in January, a time when the club typically runs a special for new sign-ups. And while attendance rates are also lower, McVey said the YMCA is making it a point to reach out to members who

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