Youth Food Justice Taskforce to kickoff Food Justice Fridays at CCC

February 29, 2012

Youth FJTF Coordinator Anthony Grimmett with Policy Link
DETROIT – The Detroit Youth Food Justice Taskforce will be hosting their first Food Justice Friday Community Dinner on March 2 beginning at 6 pm at the Cass Corridor Commons. The Youth FJTF will be joined at the community dinner by Peoples Kitchen Detroit who will cater the event and join with community members in attendance to discuss food justice issues in the city.

“The initial idea was to create a high energy, youth-centric, art-filled environment in which youth can learn about Food Justice and be inspired to become active in creating a movement and\or just share what they know with their peers,” said EMEAC's Sanaa Nia Joy. “The main goal of the event is to share information on Food Justice with the community, and to use art and media in an interactive way that transforms attitudes, thought and action in hopes that people, especially young people,will be more mindful of what they eat and possibly even demand healthier food thereby bringing change to a skewed food system.”

Youth from programs at EarthWorks, Greening of Detroit, Feedom Freedom and other food/growing based organizations have been invited as members of the Youth Food Justice Task Force. The plan is to have similar type forums at various organizations' space as a monthly event. Youth from any organization or individuals brought by their parent are welcome. Event planners expect about 50 people to attend.

Angela Newsom
The Youth Food Justice Task Force was created by the Detroit Food Justice Task Force, of which People's Community Kitchen is a member. The idea of a sharing a meal as a way to build community is a tactic used successfully by the Food Justice Task Force last year. Angela Newsom of People's Community Kitchen will work with the Youth FJTF to prepare and serve a meal to the community for the event.

“As a member of the Cass Corridor Commons and Detroit Food Justice Task Force, People's Kitchen Detroit is inspired and encouraged by youth participation in this event,” said PKD's Angela Newsom. “They are really leading the event and making it their own. For there to be sustainable, life-altering change in the city with regard to food access and affordability, the young people are vital to making that happen.”

Members of the Youth FJTF will also be traveling to Oakland, California March 7-10 for the SOUL National Youth Organizing Training Institute. The INSTITUTE 2012 is a 3-day national training for young organizers, young member leaders, and youth organizers from across the country.

Participants will come together to build their skills, exchange lessons learned, and strategize to fight to win justice for our communities. They'll develop a solid and systematic orientation to the fundamentals of organizing, including base-building, campaign strategy, and leadership development. Rooted in current youth struggles, the INSTITUTE will provide a unique space for emerging leaders to engage with the challenges and opportunities of the current moment, to advance our organizations and to build a stronger movement.

“Because it's Oakland, it's kind of like Detroit. They do a lot of work around environmental justice and they are real die-hard about it,” said Youth FJTF Coordinator Anthony Grimmett. “That's something I'm definitely looking forward to and meeting new people and some of the projects they are working on. For us, it's about development, so I'm definitely looking forward to getting some ideas that we can bring back to Detroit to share. For our report-back, I'm definitely looking for things that I can draw. I'm going to bring my artistic eye as well. We'll be looking for some different concepts as well.”