Last week, the National Farm to School Network hosted our annual Movement Meeting to mark the end of Farm to School Month! The event celebrated the collective growth seen in the farm to school movement by elevating local community stories and forging new connections nationwide.
Over 150 farm to school practitioners and community members joined the live event and were asked to elevate the communities they would like to represent in the space. Their responses as shown below:
Recap of the Movement Meeting:
As Keynote, Qiana Mickie, Executive Director of New York City Office of Urban Agriculture, exemplified the importance of farm to school efforts in fostering equitable work in local food systems, particularly through community and family engagement and support of local farmers and producers.
We also heard NFSN’s Advisory Board members discuss values-based local food purchasing, highlighting the essential role food service members play in our school food system. NFSN’s Policy Team offered school food policy wins and updates – including the recently introduced bipartisan Farm to School Act of 2023, which aims to expand funding for the Patrick Leahy Farm to School Grant program. We then moved into a few community highlights, featuring the Meskwaki Settlement School, Cultivate Charlottesville, The Food Trust, and FRESHFARM. The Movement Meeting illustrated the many unique facets and opportunities farm to school programming can provide when it comes to building vibrant food systems.
Farm to school truly is a space for cross-sectoral collaborations across multiple disciplines, including work around economic and environmental justice, public health, education, as well as racial and social equity. The gathering was designed to celebrate the champions involved in bringing fresh, local, and healthy nourishment to local communities everyday. We hope it inspired and facilitated new connections, wherever you may be at your farm to school journey.
Missed the meeting? Watch the recording here!