FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Black Mesa Water Coalition, Organización Boricuá de Agricultura Ecológica de Puerto Rico Win the Food Sovereignty Prize
October 14, 2018 (Bellingham, Washington) – The U.S. Food Sovereignty Alliance (USFSA) honored Black Mesa Water Coalition and Organización Boricuá de Agricultura Ecológica de Puerto Rico on Sunday at the tenth annual Food Sovereignty Prize ceremony on Lummi and Nooksack land in Coast Salish Territory, in the city now called Bellingham, Washington.
Black Mesa Water Coalition, the domestic honoree, was awarded the prize for restoring indigenous food sovereignty and uplifting youth leaders among Navajo and Hopi communities. Organización Boricuá de Agricultura Ecológica de Puerto Rico, the international honoree, was recognized particularly for mobilizing Food Sovereignty Brigades to assist farmers recover in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria.
Presented as an alternative to the World Food Prize, the Food Sovereignty Prize honors steadfast commitment to food sovereignty. Social movements, community organizations, and activists around the world recognize the importance of the prize.
“These grassroots organizations demonstrate how frontline communities most affected by social and ecological crises are the ones with solutions to society’s most pressing problems.” -Doria Robinson, Urban Tilth (coordinator of the Western Region of the US Food Sovereignty Alliance)
Black Mesa Water Coalition utilizes green economic development and other diverse strategies, rooted in indigenous knowledge, to address issues of poverty, hunger, and environmental injustices driven by extractive industries and centuries of colonialism. “We need to notify humanity that we need to drastically change the way we do things, especially getting away from fossil fuels, and the food system is one way to begin that transition.” -Roberto Nutlouis, Black Mesa Water Coalition
Organización Boricuá organizes farmers to transition to sustainable agriculture and sovereignty in Puerto Rico. “Agroecology as Puerto Ricans, coming from a colonial context, has given us a space to organize and deepen our struggles. This work is a vehicle of transformation for a sovereign, free, and just Puerto Rico.” –Jesus Vázquez, Organización Boricuá