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Oakwood University to serve community with mobile market

Oakwood University will be serving the community by bringing fresh foods to those who may not have access to them otherwise, and they're doing so by bus.

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — Oakwood University is launching a mobile market at the end of January to help combat the reality of food deserts in North Alabama.

Food deserts are areas where access to fresh and whole food is scarce.

Oakwood University started its health initiative in 2015, and in 2018 they became a certified healthy campus through Partnership for a Healthier America. The goal is to create a campus environment that encourages physical activity and healthy eating habits. Making the campus healthier was part of phase one and now, the university is onto the next phase. 

This phase includes students and staff from the university not only wanting to serve the community, but also wanting to help educate people on how to make the best choices when it comes to healthy eating.

RELATED: What the Food Bank of North Alabama brought to the community in 2020

"We want to make sure that we share this information because a lot of people do not realize that Oakwood University sits in a area that's surrounded by food deserts," said Oakwood University Director of Health Campus Lisa Dalrymple.

The university is going to help those who may live in a food desert by bringing those healthy options to them.

"We wanna ensure that our community members have access to fresh foods, whole foods, vegetables, and so, if they are unable to come to the campus and visit our market, we don't want that to stop them from consuming healthier foods, so, we want to bring this service to them," said Dalrymple.

RELATED: Alabama A&M food pantry addresses rising food insecurity

Another factor that can make food deserts even more detrimental to a community is transportation. By making this market mobile, it will further help those in need who may not be able to go out and get fresh food themselves. 

RELATED: What the Food Bank of North Alabama brought to the community in 2020