Dear Friends and Colleagues,
Since we launched the Seeds, Soil and Culture initiative in January 2017, I have had the good fortune to meet and learn from an incredible group of food growers and gatherers practicing agroecology worldwide. In this newsletter, I’d like to introduce a few of these Seed, Soil & Culture caretakers and share some of what I have observed and learned.
In the last year, I was fortunate to visit indigenous communities in New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, Michigan, New York State, and Ontario, Canada. In the native communities I visited, young people in local and native communities are definitely taking their future into their own hands. They are energetic, enthusiastic, respectful, and smart in how they are addressing and solving urgent social problems. Their desire to learn traditional knowledge and culture about food and farming from their elders is genuine and contagious. Though the path forward may be bumpy and long, there is positive change happening now, and there are many reasons to be hopeful for a better future.
Just as important, for the four projects reviewed here ─ two based in U.S. indigenous communities, one in Tajikistan, one in Guatemala ─ a key element of the Seeds, Soil & Culture initiative is commonly held by the folks who manage the projects: their deep commitment to honoring and further cultivating the spirituality of food and farming. Each community may recognize the inherent spirituality of food and farming in unique ways yet these beliefs are tightly woven into the fabric of their daily life and sustenance. It’s the main reason why we recommended Seeds, Soil & Culture support for their projects.
Advisor to the Seeds, Soil & Culture Fund