Catching Up With The Food Sovereignty Initiative | Sowing Seeds of Sovereignty | May 2020
Updated: Jun 30
Anpetu waste Oyate! How are you doing? We hope that everyone is well, and that your families and communities are staying safe during these times. We have a few updates to share from the past month, but we also want to hear from YOU!
At the end of April, we launched our "Come To The Table" social media challenge in collaboration with Dakota Rural Action - you can find out all about it here. The challenge is in celebration of all things food (gardening, ranching, cooking, fermenting, and more!) and participants are entered to win monthly (local foods themed!) prizes. Just share a food related picture by Sunday of each week and you'll be entered to win!
Now that summer is finally here, we're excited to be up in the garden with our new interns! We have nine interns who'll be joining us every day this summer and helping to grow produce for the Lakota Harvest Market, while learning about Lakota culture, language, and spirituality. They'll also be joined by our two new Garden Assistants, Karen Moore and Keenan Weddell.
Karen and Keenan at the garden.
While our team has been busy up in the garden getting the beds ready to plant, we've also been busy sharing seeds with communities and families for you to start gardens of your own! Thanks to a generous seed donation from the RST Elderly Nutrition program last fall, the SFSI has been able to share over 7,000 seed packets with ten communities and five community organizations to date. While we're winding down our distribution for this season, it's not too late! Message us on Facebook or email Mary at email@example.com if you're interested in receiving seeds or helping arrange seed distribution for your community or organization. We're working on making seed sharing an ongoing part of our program, so look out for seed saving workshops, info sheets, and video how-to's later this summer.
We've also been sharing seeds as part of the sovereignty kits we put together for COVID-19 relief. The SFSI won a grant from the NDN Collective to provide seventy-five Sicangu families with bulk foods, gardening tools, seeds, coloring supplies for kids, tablets, and gift cards to Turtle Creek Crossing Super Foods. Many thanks to TCC for generously matching thousands of dollars in gift cards to help provide food for families in our community during this time!
Our team has also been busy expanding our digital programming for you all! Our weekly live cooking class for kids (Mission's most popular!) airs Wednesday evenings on Facebook live at 5:30 p.m., and we'd love for you to cook along (with adult supervision, of course). If you miss the live show, episodes are also posted on our YouTube channel. Our YouTube is also home to our new broadcast, 7Gen Voices. 7Gen Voices explores the 7Gen plan and movement that the Sicangu CDC and our sister organizations Tatanka Funds and REDCO (Rosebud Economic Development Corporation) are developing. The 7Gen plan is a strategic plan for prosperity for the Sicangu Lakota Oyate for the next seven generations, and encompasses aspects such as food, infrastructure, climate change, energy, education, healthcare, housing, and more. You can watch the first episode here:
A few things to look for in the next few weeks:
Our radio show, Food Revolution, will be launching on KOYA 88.1 FM later this month. We'll be interviewing local food producers, community members, and others who are building food sovereignty right here on the Rosebud. We're also getting ready to plant in the Our Fridge Community Youth Garden (Wapaȟlatapi Unkitawapi Ospaye Ojilaka Oju), located in front of our office at 211 N. Grant St. in Mission, the brown trailer two blocks east of Wells Fargo. If this is the first time you've heard of it, the Our Fridge Garden is for the community, which means anyone is welcome within our garden. Starting in July, we'll have healthy produce waiting to be eaten, and anyone is welcome to take what they need. We only ask that you please keep in mind that there are others who also need to feed themselves and their families. In our Lakota culture, we only take what is needed, leaving half for our relatives.
And that's it for this update! Thanks for reading, and if you're interested in more updates from the Sicangu CDC and learning what we've got going on with our Healthcare, Housing, and Education Initiatives, make sure to subscribe to our monthly newsletter! You can also follow us on Facebook for daily updates.