Developing Black Land Access, Ownership, Stewardship and Sovereignty.
We're in contract to purchase land for our Land In Black Hands Program!
We need to raise $30,000 more to make this vision a reality.
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DEADLINE FEBRUARY 19, 2024
Rise and Root Farm
Karen is a farmer, community activist and co-owner of Rise and Root Farm, a cooperatively run farm in the black dirt region of Orange County, NY. Rise and Root is committed to protecting the land and ecosystem and advances food justice by connecting communities in and outside of New York City with the food that’s grown on the farm. Karen, who has been a resident of the Bronx for over 26 years, spent decades promoting urban farming as a way for New Yorkers to access to fresh, locally grown food. She also co-founded Black Urban Growers (BUGS), an organization of volunteers committed to building networks and community support for black growers in urban and rural settings. Among her many accomplishments, Ebony magazine voted her one of their 100 most influential African Americans in the country in 2012, and in 2014 she was awarded the James Beard Leadership Award.
Fund for Democratic Communities
Ed is a social critic, writer and community activist who has lived in Greensboro since 1970. He is co-Managing Director of the Fund for Democratic Communities. Originally from Little Rock, Arkansas, Ed’s political activism started with attending Little Rock Central High School and beginning to do anti-war work as a teenager. Ed retired after 30 years in industry before becoming involved with philanthropy. He now speaks and writes on issues of cooperatives and economic development while continuing to be interested in issues of war and peace, as well as education and social responses to racism. Ed serves on the boards of the New Economy Coalition, The Working World, and the Southern Reparations Loan Fund. While he spends much of his time practicing bass guitar, Ed can often be found playing jazz or blues flute along with singer-songwriters and bands in Greensboro and wherever he goes in the world. He recently won the “Plays the Most Instruments” award at Greensboro’s long-running Open Mic night.
Northeast Farmers of Color Land Trust
As an expeditionary sculptor, cooperative developer, and political ecologist devoted to bloodshore praxis and critical planetary action, Çaca is enamored with one question: What does it take to sustain a celebration of the commons? And so Çaca minds the process of ceremony, aiming to cultivate skills and sharpen awareness in times of climate conflict and ecogrief. He is an ardent advocate for children’s rights and non-human personhood, which manifests in forging undocumented refugia and carving verse. He has worked in Tasmania, Moloka’i, New Zealand, Indonesia, Australia, and across the United States organizing and studying climate change and conflict poetics, climate migration rhetorics, and interspecies cooperative organizational theory and leadership.
Freedom Food Alliance | WILDSEED
Jalal is a farmer, organizer, prison abolitionist and the co-founder of the Freedom Food Alliance and WILDSEED Community Farm & Healing Village in Millerton, NY. WILDSEED is a Black and Brown-led, feminine-centered, queer-loving, earth-based intentional community and organic farm, created as an act reparations. At WILDSEED, Jalal’s focus is engaging in farm education, the Sweet Freedom maple syrup operation, and continuing the Freedom Food Alliance work of building a Farms Not Prisons movement. The Freedom Food Alliance is a collective of small rural and urban farmers, organizers, incarcerated people and their families that use food as an organizing tool to address food sovereignty, prison abolition, and economic justice. The Alliance started Victory Bus Project which supports families of incarcerated people with transportation to prisons in the Hudson Valley with a box of farm fresh food.
We had a more than 100 attendees at our zoom event for our 3rd Annual Land in Black Hands community conversation as part of Black History Month Kingston 2021.The discussion was co-sponsored by The Hudson Valley Farm Hub, Woodstock Land Conservancy, Live Well Kingston and the Old Dutch Church, and built off the outcomes of previous community discussions by highlighting local and regional community members who are building autonomy and land sovereignty. Projects discussed included backyard gardening, plant-based entrepreneurship, self-healing through a connection with nature, and a regional movement toward secure land tenure for Black farmers and land stewards.
On February 21, 2020 we held a 25-minute screening of the 2019 Land in Black Hands panel highlights (watch on YouTube) at the Clinton St. United Methodist Church, followed by a discussion community members about ownership/sovereignty, black-led food/agricultural cooperatives, challenges, victories and resources.
During Black History Month In 2019 we launched our first annual Land in Black Hands event (in collaboration with the Hudson Valley Farm Hub and Scenic Hudson). Panelists included Ed Whitfield (Fund for Democratic Communities), Karen Washington (Rise and Root Farm), Çaca Yvaire (Northeast Farmers of Color Land Trust), and Jalal Sabur (Freedom Food Alliance and WILDSEED)
This committee, made up of Black members of the Kingston community and surrounding area, will determine how to spend the Kingston Land Trust’s Land in Black Hands Fund (currently around $30,000, with fundraising ongoing). The fund was created by the KLT to facilitate cooperative ownership, access, and stewardship of land by Black community members for land-based livelihood projects with an ecological and community-sourced focus. Such projects are intended to be in right relationship with the land, and with other people of color experiencing systemic oppression. Compensation is available for committee service.
Contact KLT’s LIBH lead, Shaniqua Bowden, at email@example.com or send a text to 845-303-6183
Ask to join our Facebook group here.
Listen here to Shaniqua discussing the Land In Black Hands Program on Radio Kingston's "No One Like You" show on 9/7/2020