Past Event

Roving Cafe Society with WBEZ: Greening Humboldt Park's Rooftops

Unfortunately, due to the overwhelming response for this event, pre-registration has now closed.

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Join us for an intimate conversation with Carlos R. DeJesús, Assistant Principal and Director of the UrbanAgriculture initiative at Pedro Albizu Campos High School. 

Last March, the Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos High School opened its first rooftop greenhouse,producing 400 pounds of food within the first year. The school’s urban agriculture initiative addresses health disparities associated with Humboldt Park’s food desert. 

DeJesús envisions Humboldt Park’s rooftops covered with greenhouses. Come learn about this initiative and one high school’s efforts to cultivate nutrition in its community. 

From “Humboldt Park area high school cultivates nutrition” by Laura Mihelich

“Imagine Humboldt Park rooftops covered with greenhouses full of fruits and vegetables. That’s the vision of Carlos De Jesus and Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos High School’s urban agriculture initiative, which addresses the health disparities associated with Humboldt Park’s food desert…According to research from the Sinai Improving Community Health Survey from 2002-2003, Puerto Ricans in the Humboldt Park and West Town neighborhoods had a 15.3 percent mortality rate from diabetes, which eclipse Chicago’s citywide rate of 1.6 percent. ‘We believe there is a causal relationship between food deserts and this high prevalence,’ De Jesus said. Armed with these figures, De Jesus asked student to come up with potential solutions to the food desert problem, and the students responded with one strong answer: grow our own food.”

Questions for Consideration

How is Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos High addressing the inequality in food access in its community? What are the benefits of students and communities coming together to grow their own food? What are some other innovative solutions to overcoming food deserts?

Want to learn more?

More about our guest speaker:

Carlos R. DeJesús is the Assistant Principal at Pedro Albizu Campos High School (PACHS) and the Director of Urban Agriculture for the Greater Humboldt Park Urban Agriculture Initiative, acollaboration of PACHS and the Puerto Rican Cultural Center, among others. The Initiative isdesigned to eradicate the community’s designation as a food desert and ameliorate the nutrition-based chronic illnesses that plague the community. Carlos is also an Adjunct Professor in Community Service Studies at DePaul University and is a member of the State of Illinois CropSciences Advisory Council.

 Co-sponsored by WBEZ 91.5FM 


Free and open to the public. Reservations are required, but we are SOLD OUT. For more information, call 312.422.5580.

If you need a sign interpreter or require other arrangements to fully participate, please call 312.422.5580. For parking locations near the facility, please visit