You’re reading Young & Green, the group blog written by participants of GrowNYC’s Youthmarket. This network of urban farm stands is operated by neighborhood youth, supplied by local farmers, and supplies communities throughout NYC with fresh fruits and veggies. Pretty cool, huh?
THIS WEEK'S MARKET SUPERSTAR: Ifedayo Famojuro, age 16
Ifedayo, or "Ife" for short, has worked for Rockaway Beach Youthmarket in Queens for two consecutive summers. He's an avid cook, involved student and citizen, and well, we'll let him tell you the rest! Be sure to check out Ife's food diary below, where one week's meals were tracked.
Working at the market has showed me that there are, in fact, tasty ways to cook healthy foods, and has thus encouraged me to eat healthier. It’s encouraged me to search up my own recipes, and find ways to make meals that both are good for you and taste good.
What’s your favorite easy meal to make at home, and how long does it take?
My favorite easy meal to cook is definitely ramen. But I don’t just make regular “cup o’ noodles”. No. My ramen is jam packed with vegetables, including corn, peas, and carrots. Sometimes I’ll even add in a little shrimp or hot dogs, just to get some protein in there.
Do you cook for your family members? How often?
Yup, I cook for whoever is in the house, usually ranging from 4-5 people.
What do they think about your cooking?
People generally tell me that I’m a good cook.
Has the market affected your future job plans? How?
I’ve always been set on pursuing a career in government, but the market has really made me consider business as a potential alternative.
Or school plans? How?
Right now, I’m a senior in high school, but the Youthmarket has definitely impacted my discussions about my future college major.
What have you learned about dealing with nasty weather (super hot or cold or rainy or windy)?
Nasty weather can really affect the influx of customers, and thus the occurrence of sales. As a salesperson, one may have to offer incentives, such as lower prices, or even resort to increased outreach, in order to attract customers.
What about dealing with tough customers?
Tough customers are just special customers. The only difference between a regular customer and a tough customer is that a tough customer requires a little more attention.
What’s the most important question you think customers at the market should ask?
“Why should I buy this?”
What’s your favorite food that you tried for the first time while working at the market?
What’s one you’re not crazy about?
What’s the funniest or the most interesting thing you’ve overheard at the market?
“This is Bok Choy, it’s so healthy--it’s a superfood!”
“A superfood? So it knows how to fly, and stops food crimes? Does it wear a ‘superfood’ cape and tights?”
What advice would you give someone who’s thinking about working for Youthmarket?
If you’re thinking about working at the Youthmarket, you should definitely take the opportunity. It’s a worthwhile, educational experience.
Do you have any hobbies?
Yup. I’m a member of my high school chorus, drama club, bowling and archery teams, and Key Club. I’m also vice president of my Student Government, and a senior member of the Rockaway Youth Task Force.
IFE'S FOOD DIARY (Click the image below for a larger version.)
MORE YOUNG & GREEN!
ALL PHOTOS: GROW NYC'S YOUTHMARKET