Growing and Working for Food Justice in Baltimore

Corn field

COVID-19 has been devastating for poor people and people of color. Systemic racism and economic inequality have resulted in higher death rates for Black and Hispanic people. Food insecurity is twice as likely to affect Black and Hispanic households as White households and the Maryland Food Bank estimates that one in seven of our state’s children suffers from food insecurity.

As individuals we can volunteer for community kitchens and food banks, donate produce from our gardens, support local farmers, and learn about the root causes of these problems and disparities. We can also support the awesome groups that are educating, organizing, and growing food to address food apartheid and food insecurity. Here are a few outstanding examples with Baltimore roots:

Black Church Food Security Network blackchurchfoodsecurity.net/

Black Church Food Security Network logo

Our mission: The Black Church Food Security Network (BCFSN) utilizes an asset-based approach in organizing and linking the vast resources of historically African American congregations in rural and urban communities to advance food and land sovereignty.

The Black Farmer Directory was created by BCFSN to connect Black Farmers to African American churches, other faith-based institutions, and all who wish to support them.

Articles, blog posts & interviews

YouTube gardening & food preservation tutorials

Donate Link

Black Farmers’ Resilience Fundfarmalliancebaltimore.org

The Black Church Food Security Network (BCFSN) Logo

This fund is a special project of the Farm Alliance of Baltimore and supports 10 Black-owned farms and Black-led food and farming organizations in Baltimore.

Denzel Mitchell, Deputy Director for the Alliance, says “2020 has been stressful but work has ramped up. On top of organizing and assisting farmers we’re dealing with racial tensions and pandemic issues. How do we help farms succeed and how do we move as an organization in this current climate of fear and anxiety?”

He noted that the City has provided support for the Alliance and donors helped get the Resilience Fund started mid-year. Farmers in need receive cash assistance, tools, and equipment.

Donate Link

Great Kids Farmfriendsgkf.org/

Friends Logo

Great Kids Farm is a 33-acre educational farm operated by Baltimore City Public Schools’ Office of Food and Nutrition Services. The farm is home to goats, chickens, turkeys, sheep and a lot of veggies and fruit.

In the 2020/2021 school year, we are offering virtual field trips for any Baltimore City Public Schools’ class (http://Bit.ly/GKFfacetime ), a pre-recorded virtual program for 2nd grade students (http://Bit.ly/virtualGKF), and agriculture-based activity kits for students to gain hands on experience in their own homes. Great Kids Farm also offers youth employment to high school students, and we are looking forward to hosting our 2nd annual African American Foodways Summit for high school students this February (a virtual event). For more on our programs, contact: farms@bcps.k12.md.us.

Do you have gardening supplies and tools to donate or would you like to become a volunteer? Contact farms@bcps.k12.md.us

Donate Link

Let’s all pledge to do more in 2021 to learn from one another, feed one another, and work for a more healthy, equitable, and just food system.

Best wishes for a safe and peaceful holiday season!

By Jon Traunfeld, Extension Specialist. Read more posts by Jon.

One Comment on “Growing and Working for Food Justice in Baltimore

  1. In the, A Wilderness Like Eden video, they emphasize food justice. The audience of the

    video is Christians who have a connection between the central practice of their faith is holy

    communion and the food they intake everyday. When people eat, they are, “Breaking the body

    and shedding the blood of God’s creation. A wilderness Like Eden started to provide a clean

    diet for people to prevent health issues and create a divine connection with God. The farm

    became a new habitat for those who left the southern states to seek a new journey. The goal

    was to create a foundation to challenge around food insecurity or food apartheid.

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