The core project:
cultivating and operationalizing racial equity in the FSLN

Creating deep, transformative, and lasting change to the mainstream food system in the US requires a focus on and commitment to dismantling the inequities and racism embedded in both the food system and within the change system itself – the “good food movement,” the FSLN, its members, and its partners. We must develop a shared understanding and analysis of how racism, inequity, and power fundamentally shape and interact with all aspects of the food system, while challenging and redesigning how power, resources, and information are managed and distributed within our networks and organizations.

The CORE Project aims to embed racial equity and anti-racism into the Food Systems Leadership Network’s framework for food systems change and strengthen the power and capacity of members to engage in systems change work at the individual, organizational, and network levels.

With the generous support of the Garfield Foundation and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, we will do this through the following activities over the course of 2021:

  • Deliver two series of capacity building workshops and customized coaching for network members to operationalize racial equity and anti-racism in their organizations
  • Reframe the FSLN’s systems leadership framework and retreat curriculum to incorporate an explicitly anti-racist lens
  • Develop, pilot, and share a network equity audit

The CORE Project is guided and supported by a team of FSLN members and partners: Aba Taylor (Interaction Institute for Social Change), Curtis Ogden (Interaction Institute for Social Change), Joseph McIntyre (10 Circles Consulting), Lindsey Lunsford (Tuskegee University), and Rachael Reichenbach (Resist Reimagine). These partners bring deep expertise in systems change, racial equity, and network development to complement the Wallace Center’s team implementing the project.

Racial Justice Trainings

We’re excited to partner with Aba Taylor and Curtis Ogden from the Interaction Institute for Social Change to design and deliver two capacity building workshops and customized coaching for network members to operationalize racial equity and anti-racism in their organizations and their program work. Both trainings will be delivered at no cost to FSLN members.

Organizational Change for Racial Justice Training: a four-part virtual learning series for FSLN members to operationalize racial justice in day-to-day organizational life. It is designed for multiracial teams of two to three people who want to develop plans for advancing racial justice and racial equity within their organizations. Applications will be open through May 17th.

Facilitating for Racial Justice Work Training: a four-part, virtual workshop for 12 food systems leaders who are actively engaged in facilitating discussions around racial equity that lead to impactful action. This workshop is focused primarily on providing tools for participants to apply in their work; participants in the FFRJW Training will also put their skills to practice by facilitating small group breakouts in the second training delivered by IISC – Organizational Change for Racial Justice. Applications are now closed

Systems Leadership Framework

While the field of systems leadership has been around for decades, its direct application to structural racism has not been widespread, and as a field it has been mostly dominated by white, male, and western perspectives. In partnership with the Food Systems Leadership Retreat facilitator and curriculum designer, Joseph McIntyre, and FSLN members Rachael Reichenbach and Lindsey Lunsford, we will examine and revise our systems leadership framework and retreat curriculum to ensure racial equity is centered throughout. The revised retreat curriculum will be delivered to network members in a virtual capacity in September 2021.

Network Equity Audit

Through the development of a network equity audit prototype, the FSLN will reflect on its current state and shape a plan for ensuring that strategy, programs and services, and internal operations address root causes of institutional and structural racism and are centered on the experiences and wisdom of those most negatively affected by all forms of racism. This prototype will be developed through an Action Learning Group of FSLN members. If you are interested in contributing to the co-design of this tool, please let us know.

We’re excited to implement the CORE Project to both support network members in their journey to operationalize racial equity and the FSLN itself as it continues its evolution into an anti-racist, systems-informed, and collaborative network advancing systems change. If you have any questions, comments, or ideas, please reach out to us at [email protected]