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Narrative Strategies to Reimagine Food Systems

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Transforming Food Culture to Transform Our World: Activating Narrative Strategies to Reimagine Food Systems

July 27, 2022 @ 11:00 am 12:15 pm PDT

What becomes possible when we seed and amplify transformative food narratives? Join a conversation with leading practitioners to explore the essential role of cultural and narrative strategies to reclaim and reimagine how we grow, cook, and gather around food.  

Countless efforts to reshape food and agriculture in the U.S. perpetuate and reinforce dominant narratives rooted in extraction, exploitation, and white supremacy. Without intentionally addressing deep narratives to change the way we think about food, we will continue to struggle to shift actions and behaviors that are desperately needed to meet this moment of climate crisis, corporate consolidation, and political polarization. When we embrace a cultural approach to food, and invest in transformative narrative strategies, a world that nourishes our mutual flourishing and collective liberation becomes possible. 

This briefing will explore orienting to a cultural framework for food systems transformation, immersing in narratives as community activation, the relationship between narrative strategy and strategic communications, and offer a case study of creative activation for cultural impact. 

Featured Speakers:

Jovida Ross, Director & Steward at Food Culture Collective

Food has been a guiding force in Jovida’s life, since her early years on her family’s organic micro-farm in Coast Miwok lands of rural Northern California. Jovida is a visionary organizer, facilitator, and strategist who has spent decades working with story-sharing as a cultural technology that builds community power. Before joining the Food Culture Collective team, Jovida was the Director of Programs at Movement Strategy Center (MSC), where she co-founded The Transitions Initiative and led the design and facilitation of MSC’s Transitions Labs. These BIPOC-centered cross-movement learning and strategy spaces gathered more than 200 social justice movement leaders from across the country to explore the question: How do we transition our world from domination and extraction to resilience, regeneration, and interdependence? With Jovida’s leadership, FC Collective has come to clearly situate our work within a movement-building context, understanding that we are more powerful when we work in concert with others whose visions align with ours.

Shizue Roche Adachi, Narrative Strategist at Food Culture Collective

A storyteller, strategist, designer, and creative director-at-large, Shizue’s joined Food Culture Collective after a decade living and working in rural farming communities. Shizue’s work surfacing and crafting narrative frameworks that deeply witness and affirm us in our wholeness and support us in the messy work of collective transformation is deeply informed by her background raising livestock and her decade’s long career working with food and agriculture nonprofits, creative projects, and mission-driven spaces. A storyteller reaching across mediums, her independent radio pieces have aired on Heritage Radio Network and New Hampshire Public Radio, among others. Shizue holds a BA in Environmental Studies from Yale University.

Fabiola Santiago, Oaxaqueña Zapoteca Chef & Creator of Mi Oaxaca

Fabiola is a Zapotec (Indigenous) migrant from Santiago Matatlán, Oaxaca, Mexico. She is a mother, an outspoken thinker, a cultural worker, and a believer in possibilities. Her personal experiences as a formerly undocumented person and her connection to Oaxaca’s rich culture – particularly as a descendant of mezcal makers – anchors her commitment to community, equity, and Indigenous cultural preservation. Fabiola expresses her love for her culture through various mediums: cooking, writing, speaking, and imagining a future where Native Oaxacans have cultural agency and where we have economic security. She is also creating Mi Oaxaca, a project that centers the lived experiences, voices, knowledge, and expertise of native Oaxacan people and those of the diaspora within the food and mezcal industries. Fabiola earned her BA in Sociology and Masters in Public Health from the University of California, Los Angeles. 

Aisha Shillingford, Artistic Director at Intelligent Mischief

Aisha is an anti-disciplinary artist, world builder, designer and cultural strategist originally from Trinidad & Tobago. The artistic director of the creative futures and design lab, Intelligent Mischief, she is an alumna of Laundromat Project’s Creative Change Fellowship, a member of the New Museum Incubator, and an inaugural Fellow at the Race Forward Butterfly Lab for Immigrant Narrative Strategy. Her written work has been published in Black Discourse and Grantmakers for the Arts. Her work has been commissioned by the Movement for Black Lives, Root Rise Pollinate, and Creative WildFire. She has a BA in Environmental Analysis & Policy, an MSW in Social Innovation, and an MBA in Social Entrepreneurship. She has studied Graphic Design, Futures Design, Design Fictions, Design Thinking and Street Wear Design. She has been a Lead Community Organizer at the Muslim American Society Boston Chapter, and at Close To Home DV Prevention Agency, Director of Racial & Economic Justice at the New Economy Coalition, Senior Associate at Interaction Institute for Social Change and Deputy Director of Innovation Strategy at Movement Strategy Center.

Presented by SAFSF with GRACE Communications and Food Culture Collective.

Advance registration is required. Free and funder-only.

Areas of Impact:

Equity  |   Food Sovereignty

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