Two Dartmouth residents fight back against hunger

Apr 7, 2016

Combatting hunger is not the easiest undertaking but the Dartmouth Grange took the time to commend two women for their tireless work in feeding the hungry.

On Tuesday, April 5, the Grange in honoring two Dartmouth residents with its annual Community Citizen Award. Susan Murray Wood of Apponaganset Farm and the Livestock Institute of Southern New England and UMass Dartmouth Senior Gabrielle Monteiro were honored because of their dedication to combating hunger and their commitment to expanding access to locally grown food.

A native of Dartmouth, Wood has worked in sustainable agriculture for seven years with livestock and vegetable farms. She currently serves as the Association Manager of the Livestock Institute of Southern New England and is a co-owner and farmer at Apponagansett Farm along with her husband, Tony Wood.

"Everyone should have access to high-quality, locally grown food regardless of where they live or their economic status,” Wood said. She is committed to eliminating socio-economic barriers to local sustainably grown food.

Susan and Tony reached out to local non-profit organizations to initiate a subsidized CSA program for low income residents in the city of New Bedford. In 2015, the program served 20 people. In 2016, it will serve about 50 now that other area farms have joined the project

At the ceremony, Jamie Jacquart, the UMass Dartmouth Assistant Director of Campus and Community Sustainability, lauded Monteiro for her accomplishments and discussed her multiple feats against hunger.

Monteiro has been “the driving engine behind UMD Grows, UMD Hunger Initiative and the UMass Dartmouth Food Pantry,” said English Professor Anica Cox. Monteiro, a political science major with a minor in sustainability, is the co-founder and president of the UMass Dartmouth Hunger Initiative. The organization is dedicated to identifying and mapping out the cause of food insecurity and develop community-driven food justice gardens with a focus on the key principles of permaculture: care for people, care for the earth and care for surplus.

Monteiro is also active in the UMass food pantry which addresses the food security needs of the often overlooked UMass student population and UMD Grows as a "hands on" research intern alongside permaculturist Lydia Sylvia.

The honorees received certificates and an engraved  model of the Grange Hall from Dartmouth Grange President, Allen Manley, Jr.