Healthy Eating and Active Living Coordinator, The Conservation Fund
Year graduated from Carolina Planning: 2015
Specialization: Land Use and Environmental Planning
Jasmine Kumalah Stammes provides capacity building and technical assistance to community-based organizations working to advance access to healthy foods and opportunities to be active.
Why did I pursue a career in city planning?
The city and regional planning master’s program was the one program that easily blended my human geography degree from Dartmouth College with my interests in public health, community development, food systems and the environment. With my degree in geography I had been taught how to examine things spatially and critically. With city planning I knew I would be led to learn about the tangible ways in which policy and people could have a hand in shaping healthier environments for themselves. My studies culminated in my Masters Paper, Stitching Food into the Urban Fabric, where I examined the planning and policy framework of communities with existing and proposed localized food system clusters.
Where am I now?
Currently I work at a national nonprofit called The Conservation Fund , in their Resourceful Communities Program based in Chapel Hill, NC. Resourceful Communities supports a network of community groups, faith-based organizations, small towns and resource providers in rural North Carolina. The triple bottom line is the foundation of our work: environmental stewardship, social justice and sustainable economic development. Rather than addressing community challenges as isolated issues, this integrated approach nets sustainable, comprehensive improvements.
As a technical assistance provider and coordinator for their Healthy Eating and Active Living initiative, I get to work one on one with community based organizations throughout rural North Carolina. I use the triple bottom approach to assist organizations working to increase access to healthy eating and active living in their communities.
What does the future hold?
I love working in mission driven work. I know that I want to continue to grow in the nonprofit management and environmental conservation fields. I plan to continue working at the intersection of public health and the environment. I am particularly motivated to get communities of color actively engaged in the environmental movement. Food and health are two ways I seek to build the bridge between communities of color and the environmental movement.
Jasmine is also a yoga practitioner, writer and avid plant-based cook, with an interest in sharing and teaching holistic wellness in communities of color. You can purchase her first novel Holding Demons in Small Jars through Amazon: