SPEECH BY TYLER GOUGH – SEPTEMBER 25, 2021
When we started, Indy Urban Acres was a place. If you thought of IUA you would drive to 21st and Shadeland. Now, when you think of IUA, you think of people. The people that do the veggie boxes. The people you see at the food bank. The people that you see working tirelessly for people that need help in our community. I want to thank those people right. Farm staff.
10 years ago was a long time ago. My 20 year old was 10, my 16 year old was 6, my 12 year old 2.
Barack Obama was still in his first term as president, Manning was still a colt. Unfortunately, 2011 was his last season as he was injured and didn’t play and the Colts had their worst season in a very long time. So…thanks Obama.
We started very simple. Grow food for people that need it. In 10 years that has meant 300,000 lbs. of produce, 2,000,000 servings, 11,000 kids for tours, and 500 high school youth working at the farm. I am really proud of that.
But I don’t like to talk about numbers. You can’t group the thousands of hungry in our city into just a number. They are all a person, a person that is cared for, a person that is loved, a person that is someone’s sweet little baby.
But there is a number I do want to talk about, because it’s relevant on our 10 year anniversary. If you live right here, 46219 zip code you have a life expectancy of 71 years. If you live in the 46032 zip code your life expectancy is 81 years. That’s a 10 year difference. Think of the last 10
years of your life or any 10 years. That would be a lot of life and love and joy to miss out on just because of where you happen to live. Personally I am thinking of my 10 years ago 2, 6, 10 year olds. What I would have missed.
So the next 10 years, the next dream for IUA, is to address all the issues that make that happen, not just hunger. Food access, income inequality, good jobs, access to healthcare, racial inequality, access to quality education to name a few.
That’s where we can go, thanks for being part of the last 10 years. and thanks for supporting our next journey.