Local Food Network Partners with Civil Rights Conference


The Northwest Tennessee Local Food Network has partnered with the University of Tennessee at Martin to present a free film screening of “Farming as a Revolutionary Act of Food Sovereignty” as part of the 2022 UTM Civil Rights Conference.[/caption]

Farming as a Revolutionary Act of Food Sovereignty: Free Film Viewing

NORTHWEST TENNESSEE (February 13) - On Monday, February 21, at 6 p.m., the Northwest Tennessee Local Food Network is hosting a virtual film screening and discussion as part of the month-long 2022 Civil Rights Conference themed, “Suppression of the Soul: Examining Restrictions of Freedom,” sponsored by The University of Tennessee at Martin.

“Farming as a Revolutionary Act of Food Sovereignty” is a 20-minute documentary that helps the audience learn about important concepts to improve access to local food systems. Following the documentary will be a panel discussion with Somlynn Rorie, the creator and Executive Producer of the film series, and Josh Acre, president and CEO of Partnership With Native Americans (PWNA). The panelists will discuss the factors and barriers of food sovereignty in their communities and solutions through farming, education, and community conversation.

“The Local Food Network is very excited to participate in this year’s Civil Rights Conference hosting two guest panelists who will focus on the concept of food sovereignty, the right of all people to have healthy and culturally appropriate food produced through sustainable methods,” stated Caroline Ideus, Outreach Director of the Northwest Tennessee Local Food Network. “We hope the film and discussion will shed light on civil rights issues of indigenous populations, and share ideas to help solve complex problems through food in all of our communities.”

Somlynn Rorie is the creator and Executive Producer of the Good Food Film Series, a collection of 12 short documentary films that bring to light the challenges affecting Arizona farmers, ranchers, and growers, as well as the communities working to build a local, resilient food system. She is also the Manager of Food and Farm Initiatives for the non-profit organization, Local First Arizona. Somlynn is a passionate advocate for the local food movement and for building programs that support Arizona's local farming community.

Josh Arce is President & CEO of Partnership With Native Americans, one of the largest Native-led and Native-serving organizations in the United States. A citizen of the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation, he has more than 20 years of experience in Indigenous leadership, tribal law, social work with low-income families, and the advancement of Native communities. Through his work with PWNA and other groups, Josh is knowledgeable of complex issues such as food insecurity, the digital divide, and emergency response affecting the tribes and other communities across the U.S.

The film screening is hosted by the Northwest Tennessee Local Food Network, a local nonprofit which serves as a catalyst for a thriving and equitable local food system that is accessible to ALL in Northwest Tennessee. Their vision is to create a sustainable regional food system that utilizes locally grown and produced foods to promote healthy individuals, equitable communities and thriving local economies. To register, visit www.utm.edu/departments/civilrights and share this event from www.facebook.com/NWTNLFN.