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Action Alert: Save the date to take action for food justice!

17. June 2013

    The annual Churches’ Week of Action on Food will take place this year from Sunday, 13 October to Sunday, 20 October 2013.

    Our theme this year will be “Seeds for Life”. Access to and control over natural resources, including seeds, is an essential aspect of supporting small-scale food producers, maintaining the health of our soils, safeguarding biodiversity and, ultimately, addressing hunger.

    The Churches’ Week of Action on Food is a time to advocate for policies and practices – locally, nationally and internationally – that tackle the injustices which cause almost a billion people around the world to be hungry and malnourished while over a billion suffer the unhealthy consequences of obesity. The week of action incorporates the International Day for Rural Women (October 15), World Food Day (October 16) and the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty (October 17).

    What can you do?

    Start your planning by considering actions like:

    • Organize a church service during the week. The Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance will provide worship material on “Seeds for Life” in September, or you can draw from past worship materials available at www.e-alliance.ch/en/s/food/food-week-of-action/

    • Gather your local traditional farmers and gardeners to build a seed bank in your local library by ‘checking-in’ your most successful breeds and ‘checking-out’ the champions among fellow breeders. For inspiration, see the partnership between Basalt Public Library and the Central Rocky Mountain Permaculture Institute and learn how it’s done.

    • Organize a church group to study local plants and indigenous seeds and then write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper to reinforce the need to safeguard these varieties.

    • Prepare a meal for your family using heirloom varieties and discuss the nutrient value of wild species versus their domesticated varieties. Would you believe that Peruvian Purple potatoes have 171milligrams of phytonutrients compared to the Yukon Gold variety (5.45mg) or the standard white potato (1.03mg).

    • Consider hosting a screening of Seeds of Freedom.

    • Schedule a study group to read the articles on Seeds and Peasant Sovereignty in the 2013 Right to Food and Nutrition Watch, which will be launched on October 16.

    • Plan awareness-raising events on World Food Day to support local food markets that return fair prices for small-scale agricultural and food workers and promote a broader use of agricultural biodiversity. Better yet, lobby policy makers and businesses to create a stable demand for local and seasonal produce through school meal programmes and hospitals.

    For more information on the issues and opportunities for food justice, plus ideas for action, see the resources at www.e-alliance.ch/en/s/food/food-week-of-action/, or contact Christine Campeau, EAA Food Campaign Coordinator, at chccampeau@e-alliance.ch

The Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance is a broad international network of churches and Christian organizations cooperating in advocacy on food and HIV and AIDS. The Alliance is based in Geneva, Switzerland. For more information, see http://www.e-alliance.ch/

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