Slow Food USA is proud to share five incredible multimedia stories from food connectors across the continent who are exploring cultural exchange every day in their work and life. Explore the ways that people from different walks of life are meeting, learning, listening, collaborating and growing through relationships that can blossom into movements.
NOURISHED NEIGHBORS HELPS PARTICIPANTS REDEFINE THEIR FOOD AND HEALTH
“Wellness Education at Mandela Partners is centered around shifting perspectives and empowering people to prioritize health, nutrition, and wellness. A core aspect of our program is a solution-seeking and neighborhood-based cohort series called Nourish Neighbors. Our goal is to lead participants to discover solutions that redefine their health. Although we use world-renowned practices such as mindfulness, our methodology focuses on developing a healthy relationship with food, resolving stress, practicing forgiveness, increasing movement, and understanding how to make the best food choices while also considering food access and economic status. We serve communities that make a collection of intellectually, physically, and culturally diverse people; nonetheless, in each cohort, 100% of the participants walk away feeling a sense of community and belonging after the 6-week program.”
MEET PRODUCER ALIYAH BEY
CONNECTING WITH FISHERS AND LOCAL FOOD SECURITY IN RHODE ISLAND
Artisanal fishers play an important role in the local food system by providing food directly to the communities in which they belong. While many on-shore fishers in Rhode Island (RI) fish recreationally, a large portion also fish for food. Based on the work we have done in RI, we know the majority of people who fish for food are from marginalized racial and ethnic backgrounds. Communities of color are significantly underrepresented in environmental studies in RI, particularly in coastal and marine research studies. As a result, little is known about these groups’ uses, behaviors, and perceptions towards marine and coastal resources.
MEET PRODUCER JAMI MILLER
GETTING A PRODUCE PANTRY OFF THE GROUND IN CHALLENGING TIMES
“As a small business owner and starting podcaster, I thought it would be delightful to share stories from the Holistic Produce Pantry that I am part of. Hope to Thrive is a faith-based organization and we took on a food pantry in March 2020. It started out with just giving Personal Protective Equipment and COVID-19 monitoring and mitigation (hand sanitizer and thermometers), and then quickly turned into food once the opportunity was given.
What you will hear are snippets from an All Volunteer Meeting that we often hold to discuss challenges of the pantry and to onboard new volunteers. I am narrating the missing pieces of how this story is weaved together.”
MEET PRODUCER JOY WILLIAMS
Joy Williams is a speaker, writer, and social activist. Her spirit sings when she dances, and has been part of the African American Dance Ensemble with the late Babba Chuck Davis and part of the Otesha African Dance Company in Winston Salem, under direction of the late Babba Hashem. She enjoys turning her family home into a living and learning homestead, growing and cooking food and making homemade chemical-free cleaning and body products, and hosting indigenous and heritage lifestyles programs. Joy believes in modeling a lifestyle rooted in what it means to live simply, off the land, and striving in harmony with God, the earth, others, and oneself, to help her community have access to locally grown food. You can find more of Joy’s writings at www.healingjoy.blog or email her, Joy@healingjoy.blog, to secure her craft where you want the presence of joy.
UNDERSTANDING THE JOYS AND CHALLENGES OF RESTAURANT OWNERSHIP IN MISSISSIPPI
Mr. Godfrey Morgan is a Jamaican-born Chef and Food Entrepreneur in Jackson, MS. Known for his unique style of fusion cuisine that pulls from Jamaica, the American South, and Asia, Mr. Morgan owns two successful food
establishments (Godfrey’s Flagship and Godfrey’s North) in the Jackson, MS metropolitan area.
During this conversation, Mr. Morgan sits down with Mr. Cantave to share his journey to food entrepreneurship and the culinary arts. Godfrey begins by first sharing stories on how his Jamaican roots exposed him to the cultural value of food and how that led him to becoming a chef. The discussion then turns to how Mr. Morgan migrated to the United States and began experimenting and crafting his unique style of cuisine as he became exposed to American foodways and culinary traditions through his various job experiences in Mississippi. To close the conversation, Godfrey reflects on lessons learned, his impact on the Jackson, MS food scene, the importance of local foods, and his hopes for the next generation of Black food entrepreneurs.
MEET PRODUCER MARVEN CANTAVE
Marven Cantave is a Public Health Nutritionist and Speciality Crop Farmer with career interests in food systems, nutrition informatics, minority health, and sports nutrition. A graduate of Case Western Reserve University (Cleveland, OH), Marven holds degrees in Human (BS) and Public Health Nutrition (MS), and is originally from the Northeast region of the US. In 2021, he founded The Food System, a nonprofit dedicated to developing local foods systems in the Mississippi Delta. His hobbies include music, photography, basketball, and reading.
What’s at stake in purchasing seafood: think family, not factory-farmed
Artisan small-boat harvested seafood is caught by independent fisher men and women who own their fishing operations, are micro businesses and use low volume sustainable harvest techniques. These men and womxn depend on consumer demand to give opportunity to their livelihoods and are often not diversified beyond a single wild species of fish for the bulk of their income. They are beholden to a shift that is happening on every coastline across America. Small independent seafood buyers are being displaced by multinational corporations that also own the large industrial floating fish catching factories.
MEET PRODUCER sarah ecolano
Sarah is a generational fisher(wo)man with decades of experience in Alaska’s small-boat, sustainable, wild-catch fisheries. She is the founder of Copper River Fish Market, a values-based online seafood boutique, providing home cooks and professional chefs across the nation with premium seafood. Her work in sustainable seafood education, fishermen advocacy, food policy reform, and gender equity carryover to her intension based business acumen.
Sarah is a James Beard Foundation Fellow, Tory Burch Foundation Fellow and a United States Of Women Ambassador. She is a Food Systems Leadership Network Mentee and was selected to participate in the Ladies Who Launch womxn-specific business accelerator. She is also a FedEx 2022 Small Business Grant Contest Winner.
ABOUT THIS PROJECT
Funding for cultural exchange storytelling workshops by Food Culture Collective, the completion of the Cultural Exchange Framework for Storytellers, and grants to our five storytellers was furnished through Food System Leadership Network’s Activation Grant program.
This program was created and led by Slow Food USA staff members Michelle DiMuzio, Dan Mueller, and Brian Solem. Additional support in selecting story finalists was provided by Adrian Miller and Melony Edwards.