FREE FOOD FOR THE PEOPLE: GRASS-ROOTS RADICAL FOOD MOVEMENT
During the 2019 growing season we will create short and long term infrastructure to grow natural food and medicine for the community in 6+ gardens throughout the Twin Cities, Minnesota. The emphasis will be to grow annual plants to produce as much nutritious and culturally diverse healthy foods and medicines in one season as possible- focusing on a variety of high yield vegetables, fruits, legumes, and culinary and medicinal herbs. We will also plant annual and native perennial pollinators to give back to the land and its non human people.
We will embody ritual into our full practice, remembering those who came before us. Honoring the land during our holistic celebration; the journey from seed to harvest and beyond. With the understanding that we are living and growing on First Nation land, building the gardens will be a practice of honoring our collective struggles as oppressed people and creating space for physical, spiritual, and earth healing in community with Twin Cities residents.
Imagine garden spaces where anyone in community is welcome to share in the joy of simply being surrounded by earth, as well as working the land and harvesting for friends and family. Connecting to our people through sharing of harvest, food will be distributed to the community based on need, access, and respect. We will distribute directly to as many communities as possible in the Twin Cities with the least access to healthy, fresh and sustainable foods.
The food economic systems in the world are one of the heavy moving parts of the larger oppressive systems we face. We believe that those systems will not be dismantled by functioning under the oppression, but by grassroots and community efforts to take control of our health through growing food and plant medicine, and building relationship with the land and the ancestors who stewarded the Earth in our past.
We hope to work with the community directly as much as possible, and plan to distribute primarily by biking and sometimes driving around neighborhoods we establish have the least access to healthy choices through socioeconomic and racial oppression. We will build relationships with people who are willing to help share with the people in their communities who they know could benefit from the produce. We will also give to food banks and community organizations if there are opportunities to get food to marginalized community members.
We are able to access urban land through established non-profits and individuals we are working with, but we will need resources for the costs of the gardens, stipends for our time / spirit / knowledge so we can sustainably dedicate ourselves to this work in the community. Costs include building at least 12+ raised beds around the city where soil is too polluted to plant in the ground as well as for accessibility. We must purchase ingredients to create healthy living soil (topsoil for raised beds, compost, vermicompost, fertilizers, etc.), buy seeds, water, and tools, etc. to build and maintain at least 6 gardens. Areas of current accessible land include North Minneapolis, South Minneapolis, West Bloomington and St. Paul. To distribute food we need to purchase 3 bicycles and build or purchase 2-3 carts.
The estimated cost to provide resources to sustainably complete the season and create positive growth within the community will be $8,120 for supplies only. Please see our REPARATIONS page for more information. Your financial support will go directly to our ability to maximize the amount of healthy produce and medicine that the community has access too. We also ask that you consider what kinds of support you can provide besides dollars. We have created a list of items we need, anything that can be donated instead of bought is appreciated as well. If we can eliminate costs by item donation it will increase the amount that can go back into the community.
Throughout the season we will also curate community food sharing events, potlucks, and dinners created from garden produce. We aim to grow crops that echo the cultural diversity of our city, and hope to open space for community members to deepen their understanding of their neighborhoods heritage and share any traditions they wish too. We hope to share in education with community members by sharing our knowledge and gratefully receiving any knowledge community members have. We hope to develop relationships with gardeners from diverse backgrounds that would like to share the space with us, allowing all people invested to access the land and resources equally.
We must work together to build resilience against white supremacist colonialist capitalist patriarchy. We must connect ourselves and our communities by building webs of grass roots and radical organization to liberate ourselves from systems of oppression. This must start with the land, our teacher and basis of existence.
Our future plans are to build on the connections and movements this year brings, and focus on food preservation for winter. We also will build relationships with rural communities to develop and nurture space for justice and sovereignty through similar grass roots organization with an emphasis on bridging rural and urban while navigating the unique experiences people in these communities face. Demanding land be accessed through reparations, we will be able to cultivate safe spaces through land trusts and intentional communal living. We will also be able to integrate rural communities within this work through communication and outreach as well as opportunities for good old neighborly closeness.
We encourage you to join us to create the future we need to prosper.