Camp ANV #UnStungHero: Aya Jeffers-Fabro; Camp Administrator

Camp ANV #UnStungHero: Aya Jeffers Fabro; Camp Administrator

Camp ANV’s #UnStungHeroes celebrates our camp staff and campers who have stood out this summer!

Camp ANV: What is your name?

Camp ANV: How many years have you worked at Camp ANV?

Aya: Three years total! I started off as a intern for my Food Systems minor at UC Berkeley, that same summer, I came on as a camp counselor and have worked my way up to be ANV’s Office Manager and Camp Administrator! I love it! I get to see the kids every day in our After School Program and during our Camps! Working at ANV has taught me so many new things about youth development, community empowerment and so much more!

Camp ANV: What are some of your hobbies or interests?

Aya: Cooking, for SURE! I love gardening and having my hands in the dirt. I love the ocean, so sitting on the beach and being out in nature!

Camp: What is your favorite age group to work with?

Aya: I LOVE the little seeds! They are like little sponges that absorb info! But this year the older group… the LIT’s (Leaders In Training) have grown on me! It’s nice to see the ones that have grown up with me in this community! It’s really inspiring to see!

Camp: What does Camp ANV mean to you?

Aya: ANV has given me a sense of place here n Oakland which is not my native city. ANV has helped me make rural/ urban connections to my passion which is environmental education. It give me an opportunity to be a kid and to play and have fun as well as remember why our work is so important. Because the next generation really is our future. 

Camp: Can you name four interesting things about yourself?

Aya: Four… Things… 1) I was born and raised on the north shore of Oahu in Hawai’i. 2) I’ve never been on a surfboard or danced hula in my life. 3) I will eat almost anything from the ocean. 4) …and I’ve been growing my hair our since the 8th grade! BONUS!! I used to play rugby in college!!

Camp: Thanks Aya!! You’re Amazing!!

Camp ANV #UnStungHero: Monika Malone; Camp Counselor

Camp ANV #UnStungHero: Monika Malone; Camp Counselor

Camp ANV’s #UnStungHeroes celebrates our camp staff and campers who have stood out this summer!

The SECOND of the UnStung is: Monika Malone -Camp ANV Camp Counselor!

Camp ANV: How many years have you worked at Camp ANV?

Monika: This is my first season with Camp ANV! I LOVE IT!

Camp ANV: What are some of your hobbies or interests?

Monika: I like comedy and and action movies! I LOVED “The Incredibles 2”!

I also love spending time with my family doing anything! We talk, eat and like to watch Master Chef! Both of my sons are into Basketball and are great players! We love watching the Golden State Warriors games together!

Camp ANV: What is your favorite age group to work with?

Monika: I think the older group of the kids… The LIT’s (Leaders In Training) because they are more independent and I work at a high school, so I’m used to them! Plus, my sons are teenagers and I feel like I can relate to them more. Teens have a log going on in their lives and are easier to have a conversation with.

Camp: Big question — What does Camp ANV mean to you?

Monika: Camp ANV is a place where I feel like a part of a caring community. at Camp, I can work with kids in a fun environment while teaching them and also learning from them and the other staff.

Camp: Can you name four interesting things about yourself?

Monika: Let’s see… I am in school to become an Ethnic Studies Professor, I love birds and currently have two parakeets, I like to watch reality TV and I work on cars! Also… I am proud to say that I was born and raised in Oakland and I am raising my family here as well!

Camp: Thanks so much for your time Monika! We are so lucky to have you on our team!

Camp ANV #UnStungHero: Kahlil Johnson; Camp Director

Camp ANV #UnStungHero: Kahlil Johnson; Camp Director

Camp ANV’s #UnStungHeroes celebrates our camp staff and campers who have stood out this summer!

To kick it off, here is the FIRST of the UnStung: Kahlil Johnson -Camp ANV Camp Director!

Camp ANV: How many years have you worked at Camp ANV?

Kahlil Johnson: Three Years! My first two years were as a camp counselor and this is my first year as Camp Director.

Camp ANV: What are some of your hobbies or interests?

Kahlil Johnson: I love playing and watching basketball, reading books and I LOVE traveling all over the country and the world!

Camp ANV: What is your favorite place to travel?

Kahlil Johnson: My favorite place to travel to is Jamaica. My family is from Jamaica and it was really cool to visit! I got to see where my family’s culture comes from.

Camp ANV: What is your favorite age group to work with?

Kahlil Johnson: All of them! …but if I HAD to choose I would pick the younger campers. It’s just REALLY easy to make them happy! LOL! But the older ones sometimes have better conversation!

Camp: Big question — What does Camp ANV mean to you?

Kahlil: To me, it is a place for kids to come and feel safe with people they can rely on. Working with youth is self-rewarding. It’s not really like work.

Camp: Last question — How tall ARE you?! Lol!

Kahlil: Lol! I get that question ALL of the TIME! I am 6’7″.

Camp: Can you name four interesting things about yourself?

Kahlil: Ummm… my fingers are double jointed and can bend all types of weird ways. I’m the only one in my family not born in Jamaica. I played on the Cal Basketball team. I’m left handed.

Camp: Thanks so much for your time and for your care of our young ones Kahlil!

Kahlil: You’re welcome! It is my pleasure!

Spring Break Mini-Camp 2018 RECAP

Spring Break Mini-Camp 2018

What a jam packed week we had for Spring Break camp this year! Thanks to the hard work of Camp Director, Kahlil Johnson and Team ANV, Spring 2018 was our largest spring break camp to date –  with more campers came more excitement, more learning, and more adventure!

Our farm is at the heart of our program and this spring break was no exception. Our youth learned about vermiculture from our Farm Manager, Aaron De La Cerda, where worms can be beneficial to farms and what conditions are needed for the worms to eat and multiply. Planet Bee came through to do a Hive Dive at our farm to discuss the endangerment of the honeybee, don some bee suits and take an inside look at the lives of worker bees. To top it all off, our campers learned an urban farming technique, vertical hydroponic gardening, and how it increases food security and access in our own homes.

Our campers know that growing healthy food is just the first step in living a more healthy lifestyle, you have to cook it and eat it too! Our Farm-To-Table Educator led campers through a number of recipes that included ingredients from our very own farm, including bean and cheese burritos, mac n’ cheese with broccoli, mango berry swirl smoothies, and even rice cake pizzas, which everyone agreed tastes better than it sounds. The dish that stole the show for a third year in a row, though, was zucchini bread and remains a Camp ANV favorite!

Gary Bizer, aka G-Biz on 106KMEL, also came through to get our campers behind and in front of the camera for some photography basics that made for both silly and serious moments of bonding with each other. Now Camp ANV has a mini-cohort of actors and cinematographers that are looking forward to a more in-depth visual arts workshop this summer that will allow our campers to tell their own life story through the camera lens.

There was no pool trip this session , but that didn’t stop our Camp ANV staff from ensuring our campers could have fun in the sun with water activities we all grew up with. We had everything from water balloon fights and toss competition to playing “Fill The Bucket”, but the highlight was Farm Manager Aaron making a homemade slip’n’slide with a large tarp, water, and biodegradable dish soap that definitely created beautiful memories for all our campers.

Our field trip for Spring Break this year was to the Sunol AgPark, where our own Program Coordinator, Ayano Jeffers-Fabro, gave a tour and led activities with the campers. Two guest architects from UC Davis led a watershed workshop that taught our campers about where our water comes from,  the importance of keeping it clean, and its relationship to the farm. We also continued our pollinator theme by talking about hedgerows, bats, birds, and insects. We capped off the day by giving back to the farm and clearing rocks for the next beds to be dug.

We always like to include culture from the diaspora in our programming, and this Spring Break included learning and training in the fundamentals of the Afro-Brazilian martial art of Capoeira. The class was taught by the renowned Mestra Suelly of United Capoeira Association with the assistance of Anesti ‘Gênio’ Vega of Capoeira Volta ao Mundo, one of our very own ANV Executive Board members. Campers learned about the African and Indigenous roots of Capoeira as it formed in Brazil, a few of the most popular and traditional songs, and learned how to play the integral instruments like the berimbau, atabaque, pandeiro and reco reco. After learning a few fundamental movements like the ginga, au, and cocorinha, along with a few basic kicks, the campers were ready to put it all together at the end of the week and formed a roda to show off their singing, playing and fancy moves!

All of our campers had a blast learning about healthy living, culture and leadership through this fast-paced Spring Break and we’re all looking forward to what our Summer Camp brings!

Check out what kept our campers smiling throughout spring break camp!

Thank you to our superstar partners and sponsors:

Clif Stories: Dreams Grow on An Urban Farm

Acta Non Verba and our founder Kelly Carlisle were featured with our partners at Clif Bar in Clif Stories. Watch this awesome video and read about our amazing campers!

Clif Stories: Dreams Grow on An Urban Farm Full Post

Strolling past raised beds of peppers, strawberries, and five varieties of tomatoes—including an eye-catching black variety known as Indigo Apple—she stops at a pomegranate tree: “Each stamen dot will become a seed. This is my favorite plant.” Then she moves onward past a bright bed of sunflowers before stopping to admire neat rows of summer squash: “We grew them all from seed. I’m so proud of these.”

After School Program ’17-’18

ANV’s After School Program is small, but MIGHTY! With field trips to the Sunol Ag Park, Lake Chabot and Cooking Classes taught by Cooking Matters!

Mr. Kahlil, our program director, Ms. Ashwana, our program coordinator and Mr. Aaron, our farm manager help with homework, tutor our students, work with them on our farm and create really awesome special projects! 

Please do not use these photos without the express permission of Acta Non Verba: Youth Urban Farm Project.


Take Root: Oakland Grows Food – Exhibit @ OMCA

Get your hands dirty and unearth Oakland’s multi-layered world of food in Take Root: Oakland Grows Food, an exhibition exploring aspects of growing food in Oakland. Hear personal stories from farmers and growers within the community, see compelling illustrations and maps, and explore hands-on interactive features while you learn what motivations Oaklanders have for growing food – including access to healthy and delicious ingredients, environmental and social justice values, or simply the joy of tending a garden. The exhibit opens December 16th 2017 to January 13th 2019.

“Take Root: Oakland Grows Food” Page at Oakland Museum Of California

Related articles covering the exhibit:

Lidia Celebrates America: Homegrown Heroes

In Homegrown Heroes, Chef Lidia Bastianich looks at veterans who return home and find farming to be a path back to civilian life. Seven poignant veterans’ stories take Lidia from the heart of Appalachia in Loom, W.Va. to Richmond, KY and Anaheim, CA, and prove that farming, beekeeping, and raising livestock can help individuals reconnect in a meaningful way to the community. The segment featuring Acta Non Verba starts around 38 minutes in.

Watch “Lidia Celebrates America: Homegrown Heroes” on PBS Website

Community Field Trip 2017 – Ardenwood Farm

ANV’s 2nd Annual Community Field Trip was a HUGE success! More than 50 community members joined our board members, staff and volunteers for a beautiful day at East Bay Regional Park District’s Ardenwood Historic Farm! We took family portraits with the amazingly talented Pete Rosos of 2812 Photography, had a bbq, took tours and made art at the farm! 

A wonderful time was had by all! We can’t wait to do it again in 2018!

Please do not use these photos without the express permission of Acta Non Verba: Youth Urban Farm Project.