Heena (she/her) is a FEEST youth leader at Chief Sealth High School who believes in making real change.
Born and raised in White Center, Heena is excited to organize for food justice to help other people in her community.
“I don’t want other people to have to go through what my parents did. My parents got diabetes and health problems from working in fast food and eating fast food. So to me, food justice is about fighting for better, healthier foods that will not bring health problems, especially in communities like mine that don’t have access to healthy food due to the high prices.”
As a youth leader at FEEST, she also wants to see fresher, healthier food for students at her school. “I would like to see more variety, less processed foods, and more halal and vegetarian options. I want fresh fruits and veggies, like guava and fresh organic carrots.”
Heena identifies as a foodie and credits FEEST with introducing her to foods from different cultures. She named her pets after food, too: a cat named Mango Lassi and a fish named Alfredo.
In addition to being a FEEST youth leader, Heena is a core team leader with Opportunity Youth United, vice president of her school’s Asian Student Association, and a math tutor with Rainier Prep.
“I think young people should start getting involved in their community from a young age, like middle school or freshman year. You can look at what’s going on and ask questions about why this is happening. Youth are the ones experiencing these issues and they can get an early start on shaping their future.”
Photo: Heena, age 16, is a FEEST youth leader at Chief Sealth High School