Heather Day: Sustain CAGJ as a Beacon of Hope, Connection, Solidarity & Love

A message from CAGJ‘s Director, Heather Day

Sustain CAGJ as a Beacon of Hope, Connection, Solidarity and Love

Happy New Year to our beloved community!

Theater action at Gates Fdn with Henry

Reflecting on all that CAGJ has accomplished in 2021 makes me feel really proud. I have so much gratitude for everyone who has carried CAGJ through these really difficult times.

I remember how anxious I was at the beginning of the pandemic, when my son was suddenly having to home-school, my husband lost his job, and I was back to being the only staff at CAGJ. I worried that the economic crisis would halve our funding, and we would not be able to get back to having two full-time staff.

How far we have come! Thankfully my son is happily back in school this year, and my husband got his job back. And CAGJ is thriving, and dreaming of growing in 2022. We have 3 fantastic organizers, whose time combined is more capacity than our previous model. In 2022 we hope to return to providing staff positions: Your donation today will help create the stability CAGJ needs to pay our organizers living wages with benefits!

CAGJ’s Members continue to show up, by donating and participating in our online events, webinars, and in-person actions! While our mostly online organizing does not feed us in the same way that being together in person does, it continues to provide connection, learning opportunities and community. We get to work closely with people who live far apart, like our African partners as well as our Washington-based solidarity campaign partners. We are so grateful to our Members who feed our solidarity activism – please join today (or renew) with a tax-deductible donation.

CAGJ’s Organizers have accomplished so much this year! Volunteers created the Rise-Up! Summer School Collective and the Zine Collective to organize fantastic programs while building leadership and community in the process. The AGRA Watch core committee and Food Justice Project met monthly, guiding CAGJ’s political work forward. Interns played critical roles throughout the year. Please make a generous donation today to ensure CAGJ can continue to fight corporate agribusiness and philanthrocapitalism while strengthening the global food sovereignty movement!

2 stacks of Our Food, Our Right: Recipes for a New Normal with a jar of flowers between them

CAGJ’s 3rd publication! In digital & print!

CAGJ’s Consultants have worked so hard this year to not only keep the balls rolling, but to expand our work in exciting new ways: Please consider a donation in their honor! Noël Hutton and Sara Lavenhar stepped up to support CAGJ at the beginning of the pandemic in 2020, and have now been with us for over a year, both indispensable! Ashley Fent re-joined CAGJ in 2021 with a 6 month contract to support AGRA Watch that has been extended in 2022, to complete our AMAZING new film series, Rich Appetites: How Big Philanthropy is Shaping the Future of Food in Africa – watch the first 2 episodes! We are also grateful to Momo Wilms-Crowe and Lisa Colligan who worked so hard on the Zine and SLEE (respectively) in 2021! And let’s not forget Nina Triffleman and Shelly Robbins, CAGJ’s awesome book-keeping team, who completely overhauled our systems in 2021.

Summer fun! Noël, Momo, Erika & Heather

Join us for the next phases of strategic planning in early 2022 – CAGJ might look different in a year!  I am very excited for the new phases of strategic planning happening right now! We are working with consultant Debbie Carlsen on strengthening CAGJ’s identity/brand in preparation for a website overhaul that we will undertake with Yippa. And we are continuing to work with Scott Winn who will facilitate conversations – with YOU hopefully! –  on potential changes to how CAGJ’s programs are structured, and our leadership and governance models – we hope you will give input!  Please donate at whatever level you are able – donations of all sizes are needed to keep CAGJ going.

As 2021 comes to a close, I am reflecting on the harsh inequities these times magnify. Covid reveals in sharp relief the inadequacies of our support systems, and chisels injustices more deeply into our ever-more ravaged landscapes. How do we hold so much pain, grief, disaster?

I am so incredibly grateful for the opportunity to help hold this space – this community – as a beacon of hope, connection, solidarity, and love. Thank you for being part of CAGJ! Let’s hold each other up as we continue to fight for a better, more just world.

In solidarity and appreciation,

Heather Day, CAGJ Executive Director

P.S. If you can’t donate but want to be part of the movement for Food Sovereignty, join us by volunteering, coming to our events and Become a member here.

P.P.S. If you’re inspired to do more, please do 2 things: 1) Get involved as a volunteer! 2) Become a Monthly Sustainer because reliable monthly income gives us peace of mind.

P.P.P.S. There are many options for donating: Mail a check to CAGJ, 1322 S. Bayview St, Suite 300, Seattle WA 98144, or find us on Venmo: @CAGJ-Seattle.

Posted in Agra Watch Blog Posts, Food Justice Blog Posts, News, Slider, Trade Justice Blog Posts.

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