Since 2008, we have been working to create a more equitable and just food system in the Piedmont. We started with two seasons of Ground Up, a program on food and food justice for high school-age youth. This program taught young people how to grow and prepare food, analyze their role as consumers, create their own media and build community.
Being immersed in Ground Up with supportive leaders, the youth truly seemed to grasp the importance of being surrounded with “growing foods” as a way to improve the lifestyle and health of their families and communities. Since Ground Up, the youth have wanted to return to The Stone House with their families to show them where they had their transformative experience.
~Santos Flores, SEEDS
In 2011 we started to do research to find out how that Stone House could support Sustainable Agriculture, and Food Systems organizations in the Piedmont and the Triangle of North Carolina. We interviewed folks doing work in farmworker advocacy, sustainable agriculture education, rural development, environmental stewardship and conservation, as well as current farmer/homesteaders. These interviews helped us gain a better understanding to what issues are currently important to individuals and communities doing this work, and also how best that Stone House could position ourselves to support them.
In 2012 we launched two trainings called “Our Role in the Movement,” one for white folks in the food justice movement and one for people of color. These trainings are designed and led in partnership with drWorks (Dismantling Racism Works) and have trained over 50 people so far.
Our Key Questions
What commitments can we create together to move forward?
How do we bring a clear framework of racial equity to the work on food systems?
Since the beginning, we have been working in collaboration with a number of other groups locally and nationally, including:
CEFS – Center for Environmental Farm Systems, Raleigh NC and Goldsboro, NC
Green Space Initiative, Durham, NC
Growing Power and Justice, Milwaukee, WI
SEEDS Community Garden, Durham NC