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Inter-Tribal Pantry Presents: Taino Health and Food Culture Day at Taino Towers in NYC

Presented in Collaboration with members of Nacion Taino de Boriken and Silent Procession NYC4PR.

GSC team and our friends at Nacion Taino de Boriken are proud to present Taino Health and Food Culture Day at Taino Towers in NYC. This event was made possible through support from Silent Procession NYC4PR and our amazing sponsors Urban Indian Health Institute and the Mellon Foundation.

Taino Borikua Matriarch, Artist, Muralist and Educator Priscilla Bell Lamberty MC'd the event, guiding us through an opening and closing ceremony. Taino Borikua Elder Natalia Gonzalez led us through a cooking demo using items available at our pantry like the Masa, Chilio, and herbs. Our returning Taino teacher Brandon Ruiz of Yucayeke Farms took us on a deep dive into Diabetes Health, sharing insights into how the Taino/Caribbean foods can be leveraged to maintain glucose health and even reverse conditions like prediabetes. He also shared other herbs and fruits from the island that were cultivated in pre-columbian times, sharing how they help the body stay healthy.

Some community members even shared feedback after the event:

"The presenters were amazing I love the opening, how traditional it was. I also appreciated the fact that all of these foods were gifts from our traditions and ancestors. It gave me an opportunity to really center myself and connect with the theme of the workshops."

"The abuelas Red Snapper and Guanimes was so delicious. I got emotional seeing an elder cooking because it made me think of my grandparents who passed on."

By the end of the presentations, our pantry distributed 1147 lbs of food and served 1147 people. We also created a flyer with more information about the presenters, collaborators, info on low-glycemic foods, and a special Diabtese-friendly recipe for Sancocho. You can read or download the flyer here.

Special thank you once again to Maria Cruz and Carmen V. Cruz for their support of this event and their remarkable contributions to the Taino community. Maria Cruz's dedication to the Taino Towers and East Harlem community has paved the way for invaluable initiatives like the cherished Taino Family Day. Likewise, Carmen V. Cruz's passionate advocacy through SilentProcession NYC4PR has been instrumental in raising awareness and fostering unity. We salute these incredible leaders for their tireless efforts in making a positive impact in our communities!

About Taino Towers

Taino Towers, a historic, mixed-use Section 8 housing complex comprised of four, 35-story residential towers that were constructed with federal funding provided by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in 1979.

About Silent Procession NYC4PR

Our mission is to educate and raise awareness of the issues and struggles for survival of Puerto Rico. We are focusing on advocating and ensuring that Puerto Rican communities receive equal rights as U.S. citizens, as well as their right to preserve its culture and heritage.

About Nacion Taino Boriuka

The Borikua Taino Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping Borikua Taino achieve higher levels of education, preserve their unique cultural identity, land preservation, and develop sustainable health programs. One hundred percent of donations go toward the Borikua Taino people.

Oct 30, 2023

Alexandria Cruz

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