Food Justice, Race, and Grassroots Empowerment

EXL student driven initiative- Food Justice, Race, and Grassroots Empowerment

Feb. 6, 2019

University of Akron Anthropology and Nutrition and Dietetics student, Elisha Banks, was awarded Student-driven Initiatives (SDI) funding to bring a visiting scholar to campus and focus university and community attention on food justice. See event poster.

The event was a collaboration between Banks, EXL Center, Women’s Studies, Nutrition and Dietetics, and Anthropology, and had three parts.

  • In the afternoon, 45 people participated in all or part of a bus tour. Community leaders from civic and non-profit agencies concerned with food issues, students, and faculty toured the Middlebury neighborhood of Akron. The buses then pulled up at The Well CDC for “Exploring Grassroots Food Access and Activism in Akron,” with panelists Curtis Minter, Darrita Davis, and Pastor Yolanda Parker highlighting Akron Food Works, The W.O.M.B., and I.N.K.S. Community and Family Services.

  • Dr. Ashanté Reese from Spelman College delivered a thought provoking keynote speech – “When Justice is Not Loud: Quiet Food Refusals in Washington, D.C.” with a brief Q&A.

  • Following the keynote, 50+ audience members from campus and community along with Dr. Reese participated in a Community Roundtable Dialogue. The discussion with community partners, students and faculty explored ways to promote food justice in the Akron area.