CAGJ Monthly E-Newsletter | APRIL 5, 2022
HEADLINES | CAGJ HAPPENINGS | TAKE ACTION | CAGJ NEWS & ANALYSIS | COMMUNITY CALENDAR | Get Involved! Upcoming CAGJ Meetings
CAGJ is Blossoming: It’s Spring, our annual time to celebrate Membership Month!
We are excited to share our 2021 Annual Report with you! You may have already received it in the mail; if not click here to see the report on our website!
This time of year we ask for your support which this year will enable CAGJ to:
- Finish our short film series, and continue conducting research and mobilizing with global allies to hold the Gates Foundation accountable in Africa;
- Stop GE salmon from coming to market, in partnership with other organizations and in solidarity with Northwest Tribes;
- Support food chain workers across the state, including the farmworker union Familias Unidas por la Justicia, who just expanded their membership by supporting tulip workers who were striking to improve working conditions;
- Organize our 4th Rise-Up Summer School, because the Food Sovereignty movement needs more people – especially youth! – who have both a nuanced understanding of local and global food system issues and the organizing skills to build alternatives.
These are just a few of the reasons we invite you to celebrate CAGJ’s Membership Month with us!
- Donate today! All donations include membership in CAGJ, and all gifts up to 10K are matched during Membership Month!
- Become a Member online: Many people don’t have the means to join with a donation – we value your commitment and time just as much! Just fill out the online Membership Form to become a member today!
- Get involved! After two long years, we are planning to come together again for two in-person events this Spring: Please mark your calendars!
SAT May 21, 10am – 4pm
Food Justice Hike-a-thon on Beacon Hill
Fundraise for CAGJ, Familias Unidas por la Justicia, and Black Star Farmers
We are bringing back the Hike-a-Thon for Membership Month! Hike, bike, walk, run, or wheel to learn about food justice organizing on Beacon Hill! We hope to visit the Beacon Food Forest, Got Green & Nurturing Roots, El Centro de la Raza and The Station to learn about how BIPOC folks are feeding the people, nurturing community and building resilience in the face of climate change. More details to come very soon! To get involved as a volunteer please contact Ashley: [email protected]
TUES APRIL 19, 6:30 – 8:00 PM PST
Monthly Food Justice Project Meeting
Orientation for new Members at 6pm: RSVP
Please register to receive the ZOOM link.
Rise Up Summer School organizing has begun! Let us know if you’re interested in joining the Organizing Collective (email [email protected]), and you can participate by attending monthly FJP meetings. Please also consider helping to organize our Hike-a-Thon in May! (see info below, and contact Ashley if interested: [email protected])
As always, new volunteers are invited to our orientation via ZOOM at 6pm: Please email us to let us know you’re attending the orientation. All are welcome! For more info, email the Food Justice Project.
SAVE THE DATE: SAT June 25th
SLEE Garden Party with Keynote Black Star Farmers
CAGJ’s annual SLEE Gala – Strengthening Local Economies Everywhere! – will take place in-person again this year! Picture yourself enjoying hors d’oeuvres and libations while perusing our Silent Auction and touring an urban garden! Ticket sales will launch in May. We are thrilled Black Star Farmers will give the keynote! Born in the Capitol Hill Organized Protest (CHOP) during the 2020 Black Lives Matter uprising, today they are dedicated to creating safe, joyful, and supportive spaces for BIPOC communities to reclaim their ancestral foodways, while facilitating difficult conversations about race and inequality. Several presenters will tell their story about Food Sovereignty and Indigeneity.
Make our 16th Annual SLEE Gala a Success! To support or get involved with the SLEE organizing team, reach out: [email protected]
- Sponsor! Provide invaluable seed funds to make SLEE happen!
- Be a Table Captain: Invite your friends and colleagues to attend with you!
- Donate to the Silent Auction: Seeking your treasures from travels, cabins, guided tours, cakes & home-made bread, gardening items, political mementos, and other items!
- Volunteer or Intern: We rely on our amazing interns and volunteers to make SLEE happen, and we always welcome more help!
CAGJ Joins Week of Art Action to #DefundClimateChaos
CAGJ joined the Week of Art Action with the support of the church that hosts our office, Welcome Table Christian Church. All six posters are hung in the windows – check it out at 1322 South Bayview Street on Beacon Hill! And keep an eye out for more posters being posted around Seattle this week.
From the Stop the Money Pipeline crew and David Solnit: “Our public and online spaces are inundated with millions of dollars of advertising by the finance industry, fossil fuel and corporations that try to impose their narrative and manipulate us. Street art is a kind of pushback; this project is a widespread visual and direct action intervention to disrupt the institutions that are funding and profiting from fossil fuels and climate chaos. This week of art action will see massive reclaiming of public space (and online space) to lift up our narratives, make our movements visible and inspire others to join.” #DefundClimateChaos #StoptheMoneyPipeline Read more here.
Rise Up! Summer School 2022 Session
CAGJ’s Rise Up! Summer School is a free, 3-month political education and leadership development program, where we create space to collectively develop tools and analysis to strengthen the global food sovereignty movement.
This year’s summer school theme is Future Paradigms, the idea of envisioning and enacting the world we want to see. By working with and drawing from the struggles and victories of CAGJ’s solidarity partners, as well as other food movement actors, we will learn about how our food system works and how to apply pressure in key areas to transform it into something that is more capable of sustaining healthy communities.
Join us for the months of June, July and August as we explore how to engage individually and collectively! This process will be facilitated by a monthly reading list, a workshop or seminar by a community partner, a guided discussion, an optional social meeting and field trip, as well as countless opportunities to participate in actions to directly support food movements on the ground. Fill out the interest form today!
Please take action TODAY to stand with African farmers!
Tell USAID: Stop funding a harmful “Green Revolution”–support African farmers instead!
Join our campaign calling on the US Agency for International Development (USAID) to stop using taxpayer money to fund the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA). AGRA is a highly unpopular and failing initiative that imposes corporate-dominated industrial agriculture on African farmers. USAID has a unique opportunity to do the right thing and make a meaningful impact by redirecting this funding to support sustainable and regenerative agriculture, as demanded by many African farmers and organizations.
Letters articulating these demands were recently sent to all funders of AGRA (including USAID, the Gates Foundation, and the Rockefeller Foundation) by the Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa (AFSA), composed of 30 civil society networks that together represent over 200 million African farmers, and the Southern African Faith Communities Environment Institute (SAFCEI). And members of AFSA have met with members of Congress, urging them to put pressure on USAID to change course. As these discussions continue in Congress, we are asking individuals to take action in support of these efforts.
Help us reach 10,000 emails to USAID by May 1! Take a few minutes today to read our letter to USAID, and add your name! Click here to send an automated email to USAID! Then share this call to action widely with your friends and networks! Individual signers without an organizational affiliation are welcome and encouraged to sign. For updates and additional resources on the campaign, check out our campaign website.
SUN May 1st, 9AM PDT
Marcha Campesina to be in Solidarity with Farmworkers in Washington State
Celebrate May Day with CAGJ in Mount Vernon, WA! Community to Community and Familias Unidas por la Justicia are organizing the annual May Day March in solidarity with farmworkers. Follow updates in the Facebook event here. Contact CAGJ for more info – [email protected] – and to coordinate rides and carpools!
CAGJ NEWS & ANALYSIS
Civil Eats Op-Ed: There Is Ample Evidence That Agroecology Can Transform the Food System
By Lauren Baker, senior director of programs at the Global Alliance for the Future of Food
March 4, 2022 – If we only see evidence provided by scientists in academic and corporate laboratories as credible, we miss the opportunity to learn from lived experience, storytelling, and cultural histories. Read the Op-Ed.
Congress Should Pull the Plug on USAID’S Failing African Green Revolution
Op-Ed by Anne Maina, National Coordinator of Biodiversity and Biosafety Association of Kenya
March 29, 2022 – A major evaluation commissioned for donors to the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), including the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and other international donors, has confirmed what many of us in Africa have claimed for years: The billion-dollar AGRA “did not meet its headline goal of increased incomes and food security for 9 million smallholders.” Women farmers, who were supposed to be among the main beneficiaries, are in fact losing out. As the evaluators state, the few who benefited “were typically younger, male, and relatively wealthier…productivity and income gains were also concentrated among these relatively high-resource farmers.” I was not surprised to read the evaluators’ conclusions that AGRA’s well-funded effort to promote commercial seeds and fertilizers was failing to consistently increase yields and often left farmers and their land worse off. At my organization, the Biodiversity and Biosafety Association of Kenya, we have seen farmers suffer with these top-down development schemes for years. I co-authored a report two years ago, False Promises: The Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, that documented many of the poor farmer outcomes now recognized by the new donor evaluation. After 15 years and US$1 billion in donor funding, it is time for USAID and other donors to reconsider this failing effort. Read the Op-Ed.
Trouble in the Tulips: Organized Farmworkers Win Basic Demands in a Quick Strike
By David Bacon, Labor Notes
March 30, 2022 – Tulips and daffodils symbolize the arrival of spring, but the fields are bitterly cold when workers’ labors begin. Snow still covers the ground when workers go into the tulip rows to plant bulbs in northwest Washington state, near the Canadian border. Once harvesting starts, so do other problems. When a worker cuts a daffodil, for instance, she or he has to avoid the liquid that oozes from the stem—a source of painful skin rashes. Yes, the fields of flowers are so beautiful they can take your breath away, but the conditions under which they’re cultivated and harvested can be just as bad as they are for any other crop. “Tulips have always been a hard job, but it’s a job during a time of the year when work is hard to find,” says farmworker Tomas Ramon. “This year we just stopped enduring the problems. We decided things had to change.” On Monday, March 21, their dissatisfaction reached a head. Three crews of pickers at Washington Bulb accused the company of shorting the bonuses paid on top of their hourly wage, Washington’s minimum of $14.69. Workers get that extra pay if they exceed a target quota set by the company for picking flowers. The parent company of RoozenGaarde Flowers and Bulbs is Washington Bulb, the nation’s largest tulip grower. “We’ve had these problems for a long time,” explains Ramon, who has cut tulips for Washington Bulb for seven years. “And the company has always invented reasons not to talk with us.” Read the article.
AGRA is Failing Farmers, but Helping Foreign Corporations
By AGRA Watch
April 4, 2022 – In late February, the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) released an external evaluation of its Partnership for Inclusive Agricultural Transformation in Africa (PIATA) program. Launched in 2017, PIATA aimed to transform agriculture into an engine of economic growth and claimed that it would increase incomes and improve food security for 30 million farmers across 11 countries by 2021. The recent evaluation of the program was commissioned by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (AGRA’s major funder) and conducted by the consulting firm Mathematica. It has found that PIATA has failed to meet most of its goals focused on farmer outcomes. This is no surprise—independent investigations by outside researchers have also found that AGRA has not reached nearly the numbers of farmers it promised, has not reduced hunger in target countries, and has not significantly increased yields. The significance of this internally-vetted report is that it confirms what AGRA Watch and other critics have been pointing out for many years: AGRA has primarily functioned to open up African markets to foreign corporations. Worse yet, it has exacerbated class and gender inequalities. Read the article.
FRI April 15, 10 – 11:30AM PST
SOLIDARITY | Connecting Across the Food Chain
In the final installment of this year’s Roots of Resilience series, Anna joins Ligia Guallpa of the Worker Justice Project, Suzanne Adely of Food Chain Worker’s Alliance, and food and labor reporter Leah Greenberg to share how organizing has made big changes for workers during the pandemic. More information.
FRI April 22, 11AM – 3:30PM PST
Earth Talks 2022
A virtual showcase of short, 5-minute presentations by SU faculty, students, staff, and community partners with the theme of Just Sustainability – Care for our Common Home. This event is hosted by CEJS and co-sponsored by the Center for Ecumenical and Interreligious Engagement, the Institute for Catholic Thought and Culture, and the Indigenous Peoples Institute. Online event, broken up over two sessions on the 22nd. More information.
MON Apr 11 – SAT Apr 30
Garden Lovers’ Book Sale
Thousands of gently used books for sale on all things horticultural, at irresistible prices. Friday’s sale features a book launch for Grow: A Family Guide to Plants and How to Grow Them, by Riz Reyes. The book sale coincides with an exhibit and sale of artwork by members of the Pacific Northwest Botanical Artists. More information.
FRI May 6 – SUN May 8, 5-7 PM (6th) & 9AM – 3PM (7th – 8th)
Tilth Edible Plant Sale
Tilth Alliance is holding an edible plant sale of the largest selection of locally grown fruit and vegetable plants in the Puget Sound region. The location is Meridian Park (4649 Sunnyside Ave. N., 98103) and an Early Bird Sale is held on May 6; 5-7 p.m. Regular hours will continue on the 6th and 7th. Main sale area capacity staggered by the purchase of tickets and wristbands. Buy tickets. More information.
SUN, May 15 3 – 4:30PM PST
Benefit performance of “The Alaska Suite”
Don’t miss the Nelda Swiggett Quintet’s May 15 performance of the “Alaska Suite” benefiting Green Buildings Now.
Tickets are on sale here to experience Nelda Swiggett’s touching and powerful multimedia jazz work at Seattle First Baptist Church. All proceeds benefit Green Buildings Now, a grassroots initiative promoting social justice and climate resilience by working with marginalized communities to remove fossil fuels from buildings in a just way.
Swiggett’s “The Alaska Suite: a story of beauty, loss and hope” depicts how the climate crisis is unfolding in Alaska and leaves audiences inspired to take action. The 90-minute performance features jazz, images, poetry, spoken word and audience participation. One listener called the work “part love song, part sad ballad to Alaska, and part battle cry to reclaim the health of our planet.” You can learn more about “The Alaska Suite” here, including a five-minute documentary.
Time varies, for more info email us
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