BLACK FOOD SOVEREIGNTY

The Afri-Can FoodBasket, along with the
Network for the Advancement of
Black Communities, presents

Black Food Sovereignty Roundtable
Saturday May 1st, 2021 

Join us in creating a roadmap to food liberation and self-sufficiency. This roundtable specifically seeks to hear from attendees who identify as Black and live in Toronto as their voices have been traditionally silenced in broader discussions of food justice. The event will be closed captioned in French.

Moderated by:
Itah Sadu

Keynote Speakers:

Dawn Morrison
Secwepemc Nation and Director of the Working Group on Indigenous Food Sovereignty (WGIFS)

Sacajawea Saki Hall
Operations and Community Land Trust Director, Cooperation Jackson

Kali Akuno, Co-Founders, Cooperation Jackson

 


12:00pm – 12:30pm
GENERAL OPENING REMARKS: 

Early Remarks: 
Itah Sadu, Moderator, A Different Booklist

Libation:
Nene Kwasi Kafele, Resident Research Scholar York University’s School of Social Work, Manoyam Matse for Manya Krobo Area Ghana

Statement of Solidarity and Land Acknowledgment:
Nicole Austin, Black Student Engagement Coordinator, Ryerson Urban Farm

Welcoming Remarks:
Anan Lololi, Coordinator, Black Food Sovereignty Initiative Toronto

Anthony Morgan, Manager of CABR Unit, City of Toronto

amanuel melles, Executive Director, Network for the Advancement of Black Communities (NABC)

 


5 MIN BREAK – Black People in Alberta Video Clip 


12:35pm – 1:30pm
SESSION 1
KEYNOTE PANEL
Building a Black Food Sovereignty Alliance

Moderator Introduces Speakers:
Itah Sadu, Moderator, A Different Booklist

Keynote 1 : Indigenous Models of Food Sovereignty:
Dawn Morrison, Secwepemc Nation and Director of the Working Group on Indigenous Food Sovereignty (WGIFS)

Keynote 2 : African American Perspectives on Black Food Sovereignty
African American Perspectives on Black Food Sovereignty

Sacajawea Saki Hall, Operations and Community Land Trust Director, Cooperation Jackson

Kali Akuno, Co-Founders, Cooperation Jackson

Moderator Leads Conversation
Itah Sadu, Moderator, A Different Booklist

 


30 MIN BREAK with 10 MIN Performance


13:50pm – 14:00pm
Performance:

Award-Winning Ghanaian-Bermudian
Performer, Producer and Composer
Kobèna Aquaa-Harrison

Kobè is an award-winning Ghanaian-Bermudian performer, producer and composer. His artistry has garnered Juno, Dora, Chalmers Foundation and other awards for his work in music, media, film, television, dance and theatre. Clients include FIFA, CBC, Nissan, Soulpepper, Shaw Festival, Stratford Festival, Montana Steele, arts councils and institutions. Kobè performs internationally for diverse audiences from presidents to preschoolers, on electric and acoustic instruments designed and built by himself.

Kobè’s trademark “afrosonic jollof,” is “The sound of jazz, rock, reggae, hip hop coming face to face with their ancestors.” Kobè leads the eclectic all-star, Djungle Bouti Orchestra with  members from Trinidad to Tanzania and Algeria to S. Africa. Their “Djazz  2.1.4” album was acclaimed “an audio decoding of African DNA” and nominated for a Toronto Independent Music Award.

The former AfroFest President/ Artistic Director, Michèzo! festival founder and #1 prime-time radio host, is Cultural Development Director at Abandze Embassy in Toronto’s W. Queen W, arts & entertainment triangle.

 


14:00pm – 17:00pm
SESSION 2
PRESENTATIONS & BREAKOUT ROOMS
Black Food Sovereignty in Toronto

Black Food Sovereignty Overview:
Anan Lololi, Coordinator, Black Food Sovereignty Initiative Toronto

Presentation:
The State of Black Food Sovereignty in Toronto
Bashir Munye, Chef + Food Advocate

Break Out Rooms:
Forming Alliances

 


10 MIN BREAK


 

Plenary Session:
Itah Sadu, Moderator, A Different Booklist

Closing Remarks:
Sheldomar Elliot, Co-Chair, Toronto Youth Food Policy Council



SPEAKERS

Anan  Xola Lololi
Food Sovereignty & Food Justice Advocate Co-Founder
of the Afri-Can FoodBasket

Anan Xola Lololi is a Food Sovereignty & Food Justice advocate, musician and a vegan (44 years).  Anan is one of the founders of the Afri-Can FoodBasket (AFB) a non-profit Food Justice & Food Sovereignty organization that began in 1995 in Toronto. He has been the executive director of AFB for 25 years promoting Community Food Security, Food Sovereignty and Food Justice in Toronto, North America and the Caribbean. 

Anan has a master’s degree in environmental studies from York University with a focus on Community Food Security and a diploma in Business Administration from Centennial College. Anan is presently a Research Associate Fellow @ Ryerson University. His passion is working in low-income communities to help create food secure communities. 

He was an executive and founder member of the Growing Food and Justice for All Initiative based in Milwaukee, was an executive and founder member of the Community Food Security Coalition of North America –outreach & diversity committee, board member of the City of Toronto Food Policy Council, past Chair of Food Secure Canada Diversity Working Group, administrative and food policy consultant of the Detroit Black Community Food Security Network, past Committee Member of Toronto Region and Conservation Authority Humber Watershed Alliance  and was a food policy and urban agriculture consultant for FoodShare Toronto. Anan had also been appointed to the Sustain  Ontario Advisory Council. He has lectured across Canada, US and in the Caribbean on community food security and food justice.

Over the last forty years Mr. Lololi has done extensive community work in the areas of equity, food justice, food sovereignty, community food security, social justice and anti-racism, including training, community development, organizing and running equity/diversity management, community economic development and youth leadership development programs. Mr. Lololi is still a member of Toronto’s most prolific reggae group Truths & Rights and a former member of the Black Music Association North America. Anan main body of work of recent has been focused around Black Food Sovereignty in Toronto, engaging the dynamic Black sustainable food systems individuals and organizations in the Black Community  in conversation on Black Food Sovereignty. Anan has moved on from what he calls “Neighborhood Food Security” establishing food security initiatives in Toronto’s priority communities. To date he has personally work with 2 urban farms and over 100 community/back-yard gardens and engaged over 1,200 gardeners in Toronto in community garden animation and leadership training.


 

Dawn Morrison
Founder/Curator of the Working Group on Indigenous Food Sovereignty

Dawn Morrison is of Secwepemc ancestry and is the Founder/Curator of the Working Group on Indigenous Food Sovereignty. Since 1983 Dawn has worked and studied horticulture, ethno-botany, adult education, and restoration of natural systems in formal institutions as well as through her own personal healing and learning journey. Following the years she spent teaching Aboriginal Adult Basic Education, Dawn has been dedicating her time and energy to land based healing and learning which led her to her life’s work of realizing herself more fully as a developing spirit aligned leader in the Indigenous food sovereignty movement.

Dawn has consistently organized and held the space over the last 14 years for decolonizing food systems discourse in community, regional and international networks and has become internationally recognized as a published author. Dawn’s work on the Decolonizing Research and Relationships is focused on creating a critical pathway of consciousness, that shines a light on the cross-cultural interface where Indigenous Food Sovereignty meets, social justice, climate change and regenerative food systems research, action and policy, planning and governance. Some of the projects Dawn is curating include: Wild Salmon Caravan, Indigenous Food and Freedom School and, Dismantling Structural Racism in the Food System.


 

Itah Sadu
Co-Owner A Different Booklist

Itah Sadu award-winning storyteller and children’s  author. Co-owner of the independent bookstore A Different Booklist, specializing in African and Caribbean Canadian literature and diverse resources from around the world. Her many critic responsibilities have included: Critic for the Ministry of Community and Social Services, Critic for the Ministry of Children and Youth Services, Critic for Women’s Issues, Critic for the Attorney General, Critic for the Ministry of Government Services, Critic for the Ministry of Transportation, and Critic for the Ministry of Infrastructure.

When meeting Itah Sadu, the first thing you will see is her smile, the first thing you will notice is her warmth.

As a dynamic entrepreneur and community builder, she utilizes creativity, leadership and teamwork infrastructure and legacy in communities.

Her objective is simple and to the point: To work with organizations that engage in programs for youth with the focus on education, pathways and community economic development.

A woman of many talents, Sadu, has been a community developer, entrepreneur and educator in Toronto for decades. Sadu’s youth entrepreneurship program designs have been adapted as models for job placement opportunities, skill development and leaders-in-training programming. One such programme was the Fresh Elements/Fresh Arts initiative designed for youth to develop technical and production skills in the cultural industries. 

Featured on the African Canadian History 2011 Poster, Sadu has contributed to the legacy of African Canadians with the naming of Toronto sites in honour of their contributions. Sadu is a bestselling children’s author, whose books are translated into foreign languages, adopted by schools for curriculum and adapted to film.

She is the co-owner of A Different Booklist, one of the few independent bookstores left in Toronto with a focus on finding literary gems that reflect Toronto, the African Canadian and Caribbean Canadian diversity.

Her love for storytelling has taken her to schools around the world where she has developed stories that have a special appeal for children.

A former Vice-President of the Black Business and Professional Association, and former board member of the Canadian Book Centre. Itah is currently a Harry Jerome Scholarship Trustee and a board member of The Watah School, an organization dedicated to the development of the performing arts.

Her awards include: The Onyx lions Award for Community Service, The Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario Award for Children’s literature, Sesheme Hero Amongst Us, Black Business and Professional Association, Women of Honour Award, Toronto Arts Council Foundation Award, the African Canadian Achievement Award for Excellence in Business, Pioneer for Change Award for Excellence in Entrepreneurship, African Canadian Achievement Award for Community Service, and the North York Urban Hero Award for business.


Anthony Morgan
Lawyer, Manager of the City of Toronto’s Confronting
Anti-Black Racism (CABR)

Anthony is a lawyer and the Manager of the City of Toronto’s Confronting Anti-Black Racism (CABR) Unit. The CABR Unit is responsible for the implementation of the Toronto Action Plan to Confront Anti-Black Racism.

Prior to joining the City, Anthony was an Associate at Falconers LLP, specializing in the areas of civil, constitutional and criminal state accountability litigation. He has a special interest in anti-racist human rights advocacy, particularly in the area of anti-Black racism. He has appeared at various levels of court, including the Supreme Court of Canada, and has also represented the interests of African Canadians before United Nations human rights treaty bodies. In both 2016 and 2017, Anthony was nominated as one of Canada’s Top 25 Most Influential Lawyers by Canadian Lawyer Magazine.

Anthony is a frequent legal, social and public affairs commentator on issues concerning race and racism, critical multiculturalism and critical race theory in Canada. His comments on these issues have been featured in the Globe and Mail, National Post, Toronto Star, Ricochet, Huffington Post Canada, and other major newspapers and broadcast outlets, including CNN.

Also a freelance columnist, Anthony’s column, Colour-Coded Justice, appears regularly in The Monitor. The Monitor is the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives’ bimonthly policy and current affairs magazine. Anthony’s column explores racial justice issues in Canadian life, law and policy.

While based in Toronto, Anthony is completing a Masters of Studies in International Human Rights Law at the University of Oxford. In addition to holding an LL.B. and B.C.L. from McGill University, Faculty of Law, he holds an Hons. B. A. from the University of Toronto in Ethics, Society & Law.


 

Nene Kwasi Kafele
Community Advocate

Nene Kwasi Kafele is an Elder and community organizer. For close to 40 years, Nene has provided human rights and social justice leadership in Canada (especially Toronto and Halifax), the Caribbean and Africa..

Nene is Resident Research Scholar at York University’s School of Social Work (Youth Research and Evaluation Exchange).  Nene has researched and written extensively on Afrikan spirituality, Afrikan traditional healing frameworks, urban youth mental health. community development, Youth leadership, organizational development , community economic development and strategic planning. 

Nene is an organizer, teacher, trainer, researcher, community advocate, trauma clinician, motivational speaker, youth advocate and conflict mediator. Nene is a certified Conflict Transformation Specialist, having volunteered with Scarborough Conflict Resolution Services for more than 10 years.

He was Director for Health Equity at the Centre for Addiction and Mental health for 15 years and was also Director of Economic resources at the Ontario Anti Racism Secretariat for 5 years. Nene was also Executive Director of the Jamaican Canadian Association (the largest African Canadian social service agency in Canada). Nene is currently Lead Faculty at the Toronto Hostels Training Centre providing training, planning and consultation support to the shelter system.

Nene has provided anti-oppression and anti-Black racism training, organizational assessment and planning, executive mentoring and coaching to most child and youth mental health agencies in the Greater Toronto Area. He has worked extensively with many social service agencies in this regard- including child welfare agencies in Durham, Peel, York and Toronto.

Nene has received numerous awards for his work in social and economic justice, human rights and equity. He is listed in “Who is Who in Black Canada”.  Nene was recently identified as one of the “100 most influential people of Colour Anti Racist Activists in Toronto” in the Annual Racism Free Ontario Campaign hosted by the Council of Agencies Serving South Asians (CASSA).  In 2019 Nene was awarded the prestigious Peter Armstrong Community Award of Excellence by the Renascent Centre in Toronto.

He is Manoyam Matse (Development Chief) for Manya Krobo Traditional Area, in the Eastern Region of Ghana with responsibilities for young people.

Nene currently resides in Nkanfoa, Cape Coast, Ghana and Toronto, Canada and is the proud father of two.


 

Sacajawea “Saki” Hall
Operations and Community Land Trust Director

Sacajawea “Saki” Hall is a black feminist, activist, mother, birth-worker, educator and journalist. Saki sees her life’s work as engaging in the collective struggle for African liberation, human rights and overall social transformation. She is a native Lower East Side New Yorker and has migrated to Jackson, Mississippi where she is a founding member of Cooperation Jackson. Saki’s leadership within Coop Jackson includes strategic planning, cooperative development and financial planning, fundraising, communications and she anchors the development of the Fannie Lou Hamer Community Land Trust.


 

Kali Akuno
Co-Founder and Co-Director of Cooperation Jackson

Kali served as the Director of Special Projects and External Funding in the Mayoral Administration of the late Chokwe Lumumba of Jackson, MS. His focus in this role was supporting cooperative development, the introduction of eco-friendly and carbon reduction methods of operation, and the promotion of human rights and international relations for the city. 

Kali also served as the Co-Director of the US Human Rights Network, the Executive Director of the Peoples’ Hurricane Relief Fund (PHRF) based in New Orleans, Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina. And was a co-founder of the School of Social Justice and Community Development (SSJCD), a public school serving the academic needs of low-income African American and Latino communities in Oakland, California.


 

Sheldomar Elliott
Co-Chair Youth Food Policy Council

Sheldomar is passionate about food justice work that tackles issues around food insecurity and achieving food sovereignty for marginalized communities. His focus is on how Black, Brown, and Indigenous communities are able to acquire food sovereignty within our current food system which continues to oppress these exact peoples. As a Ryerson University student studying Environment and Urban Sustainability, he recognizes the urgency needed to change and/or reform our food system through policy and advocacy work to ensure a sustainable one for years to come. Sheldomar has experience in organizing food events that bring together food activists and champions from around the GTA to facilitate discussion around what the future of food could look like through an equitable and anti-oppressive lens while remaining inclusive to folks of varying identities. On his free time, he loves to travel the world and enjoys the simplest joy of being present with his friends, family, and life.


 

Bashir Munye
Chef + Food Advocate

Chef Bashir Munye is part of a generation of Toronto chefs who are inspired by global cuisine while creating the future of local and sustainable food ideas.

A true global child, Bashir’s experience of food embraces many geographical and cultural boundaries.

Born in Somalia, and raised in Italy, he has called Toronto home for the past 26 years. Growing up in the Mediterranean fresh, seasonal foods was the norm. Chef Bashir continues this tradition through his farmer’s market operations where he connects to the local farming and artisanal food business community. His approach to cooking is simple. He is a passionate advocate for promoting diverse food representative of Toronto’s multicultural communities. He believes and advocates for access to good quality food for everyone. He is currently working with Ontario Greenbelt in food literacy and food advocacy by engaging, educating multiethnic African chefs and food entrepreneur in the accessibility of Ontario-grown culturally diverse crops.

Currently, Bashir is a culinary professor at George Brown College.