Participatory Action Research Project in Mar Vista

In April, students from Central High School in the Mar Vista Housing Projects joined 19 students from Azusa Pacific University’s LA Term program to survey 64 residents in the low-income housing complex.  The students set out to learn more about the residents’ eating habits, level of access to healthy foods, family health, and interest in growing their own food.
Significant findings from the participatory action research project:

  • 48% of the residents indicated that they see more fast food restaurants in their neighborhood than grocery stores.
  • 51% of the residents surveyed reported that their family and children eat from fast food restaurants at least once per week.
  • 55% of residents surveyed reported that members in their family household have diabetes, high blood pressure or high cholesterol.
  • 66% of residents indicated an interest in learning about gardening and having their own garden to grow their own food.

Currently, the housing authority management has a policy banning residents from growing their own food.  Students plan to share these results with the housing management to advocate for a change in the policy.

Written: 24th April 2012

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