Greetings BFSC Community!
It’s been a jam-packed year and Black Food Sovereignty Coalition has been on the move! We kicked off 2020 with the launch of Black Futures Farm in SE Portland. Then in February, we worked with Mudbone Grown to host an incredibly successful second annual Back to the Root gathering at the Redd on Salmon Street. A few weeks after the conference, the Covid-19 pandemic struck, shutting down the region, and creating major disruptions across food, economic, and health systems. Black Food Sovereignty Coalition kept the momentum going and accelerated our efforts to meet community needs.
In late Spring, we worked with Village Gardens and Metro to take on the stewardship of a new farm on Wapato (Sauvie) Island and facilitated farmland access for 10 BIPOC growers. In June, we partnered with Rockwood CDC to launch Grandma’s Hands, a program that provides Black families with recipe kits with produce from Black farmers and online cooking demonstrations featuring those ingredients. Later that month, we worked with Raceme Farm Collective and Ecotrust to launch Come Thru Black and Indigenous market. In July, we began distributing hundreds of boxes of healthy food (including produce grown by BIPOC farmers) to Black and Indigenous families through a partnership with Equitable Giving Circle and B-Line Sustainable Delivery. Collectively our work has reached thousands and made powerful impact across three core areas:
Food: Provide healthy, culturally relevant food, grown by our community members, to meet the nutritional needs of Black people. Build leadership capacity among our network to advance equitable policy/systems change and spur the development of a resilient regional food system.
Place: Reclaim our right to thrive in any neighborhood by connecting people to place and the opportunities that the place provides; increasing the self-reliance of Black people in meeting the food needs of their communities through stewardship of land resources.
Wealth: Deconstruct barriers to wealth creation within our communities and build foundations for wealth creation in the Black community through food and place; create innovative marketing strategies that mutually benefit Black food producers and Black consumers
As summer winds down and we move into fall, Black Food Sovereignty Coalition will continue to serve as a collaboration hub, working alongside established justice-driven efforts to incubate innovative community initiatives, strengthen community-driven food systems, transform cultural spaces, and build economic opportunity.