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2020’s virtual #TheShift Summit takes place Saturday

Register Here! #TheShift Summit

Hosted by the Grand Rapids Area Black Business (GRABB).

This one-day experience dedicated to empowering Black entrepreneurs and communities, #TheShift Summit has gone virtual this year with the theme, Progressively Black. This annual gathering connects, engages and informs Black entrepreneurs, creatives small business owners, professionals and stakeholders about opportunities, resources and programs in the entrepreneurial ecosystem that will foster to economic empowerment and equity.

#TheShift Summit attendees will enjoy a day filled with panel discussions, workshops and networking with entrepreneurs, influencers, doers, creatives and other social, public and private leaders.

Featured speaker Lynn Smith is an entrepreneur and the creator of Buy The Block, one of only Black-owned crowd-investing platform that is helping Black communities build wealth while determining the direction of development in their communities.

Lynn has invested in real estate since she was 21, and experienced firsthand how difficult it can be for small investors to get financing. She also saw how the North Miami neighborhood where she grew up was radically altered by development, without any input from residents. Those experiences led her to found Buy The Block.

Smith is motivated by the power that crowd-investing has to engage people and give them a sense of agency. “It’s really helps to get the community involved and show them they can be part of an action that’s being taken in their community and get the benefits and rewards,” she says.

Learn More Here – Buy The Block

Featured speaker, Andre M. Perry, is a fellow in the Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings, a scholar-in-residence at American University, and a columnist for the Hechinger Report. He is the author of the new book Know Your Price: Valuing Black Lives and Property in America’s Black Cities, which is currently available wherever books are sold.

A nationally known and respected commentator on race, structural inequality, and education, Perry is a regular contributor to MSNBC and has been published by The New York Times, The Nation, The Washington Post, TheRoot.com and CNN.com. Perry has also made appearances on CNN, PBS, National Public Radio, NBC, and ABC. His research focuses on race and structural inequality, education, and economic inclusion. Perry’s recent scholarship at Brookings has analyzed Black-majority cities and institutions in America, focusing on valuable assets worthy of increased investment.

His research has spotlighted the struggles of Black businesses—including artists and art institutions, restaurants, and barbershops and beauty salons—as they await federal relief from COVID-19’s economic impact.

Learn More Here – Know Your Price



Last farmers market of the season Saturday Nov. 7

11 a.m. – 4 p.m. at MLK Jr. Park, 900 Fuller Ave. SE 49506

Last chance to visit the Southeast Area Farmers Market is Saturday Nov. 7. Have you tried the wares of Chef Boi Boi Seasoning or Shea Buttercups by TahLee? They and other vendors will be on hand to serve you.

If you have Double Up Food Bucks left, now is a good time to spend them! Our market warmly welcomes SNAP, EBT, WIC and many other assistance and coupon programs. 

Only 2 more farmers’ market days: Oct. 24 & Nov. 7

11 a.m. – 4 p.m. at MLK Jr. Park, 900 Fuller Ave. SE 49506

This Saturday at the Southeast Area Farmers Market:
Urban Core Collective is providing voter information!

Stop by the Southeast Area Farmers Market Saturday Oct. 24 for organic, fresh, local produce from Groundswell Farm, tasty cottage kitchen goods, and handcrafted personal care items and crafts. If you have Double Up Food Bucks left, now is a good time to spend them! (Our market warmly welcomes SNAP, EBT, WIC and many other assistance and coupon programs. 

Plant trees with Friends Friday and Saturday

Help plant trees with Friends of Grand Rapids Parks
Friday, Oct. 9: 2-4 p.m. and 5:30-7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 10: 9-11 a.m., 12-2 p.m. and 3-5 p.m

Register here by 5 p.m. Wednesday!

Friends of GR Parks believes that every person should have equal access to beautiful outdoor spaces and experiences, and is working hard to make this a reality in GR. You can volunteer with them for the Mayor’s Greening Initiative this week. Together with volunteers (in a socially distanced fashion), they are add 400 trees to the Garfield Park neighborhood.

There is a role for you, whatever your skill level or age. Whether you plant a tree, clean tools, run registration or move trees, YOU can make a long-lasting impact in your community by lending a hand!

TREE PLANTING: Plant 1-2 trees in Garfield Park or surrounding neighborhood during your 2-hour shift. 

SITE LEADER: These key volunteers are assigned a specific area to oversee during the event. This includes greeting volunteers assigned to work in the area, demonstrating tree planting, distributing and collecting tools, and communicating with Friends staff.

CLEAN-UP: Clear registration area, put away tools and supplies, and assist FGRP staff.

Farmers Market at MLK Jr. Park Saturday!

Stop by for organic, fresh, local produce from Groundswell Farm, tasty cottage kitchen goods, and handcrafted personal care items and crafts.

Groundswell Farm organics will do your body good!

Ask our market manager, Belinda Hendersen, about ordering bulk whole foods with us, e.g. dry beans, whole grain flours, nuts and seeds, pasta, rice and more..

Items are ordered from Country Life Natural Foods, a supplier to Michigan food co-ops. View the entire PDF Catalog herePlace your order by emailing media@oOKTjustice.org or in person at the market.  Orders will be available for pick-up at the market on October 10.

As the Southeast Area Farmers’ Market accepts Bridge card/SNAP/EBT, its patrons using these programs will be able to buy bulk food items at the market along with fresh, local fruits, vegetables and herbs. The market offers some bulk foods for direct purchase as well. By ordering together, minimum purchase requirements for free delivery are met. Food orders will not be marked up from the catalog price. And, OKT is not adding any kind of fee to orders.

Food Justice Film Festival

The Food Justice Film Festival, Sept 24-27, features four award-winning films that connect issues of environmental justice with our food system, racial justice and access to healthy, sustainable food. Watch independently or set up watch-parties with your staff, friends, family to stay connected during these trying times. Films are free for all audiences. Each film will be available for 24-hours on its scheduled day during the #FoodJusticeFilmFestival.

  • Sept. 24: “Gather” – a brand new release about indigenous food sovereignty, traditional food systems that protect biodiversity of nature.
  • Sept. 25: “Invisible Vegan” – a film about African American access to healthy, sustainable food, cultural heritage, and plant-based diets.
  • Sept. 26: “Dolores” – featuring Dolores Huerta, an influential labor leader and her work to protect farmworkers.
  • Sept. 27: “Urban Roots” – highlighting the urban farming movement to address lack of access to sustainable, healthy foods.

Each film at the #FoodJusticeFilmFestival has an accompanying panel of interviews with filmmakers and activists including:

  • Dolores Huerta – renowned labor activist
  • Sanjay Rawal – dir. (“Gather”) and Jasmine Leyva – dir. (“Invisible Vegan”)
  • Jo’Vonna Johnson Cooke – Maitu Foods, Eugene Cooke – Grow Where You Are
  • Jacqui Patterson – climate activist from the NAACP
  • Twila Cassadore – San Carlos Apache activist
  • Samuel Genshaw – Yurok tribe and director of the Ancestral Guard
  • lauren Ornelas – director of the Food Empowerment Project
  • Kat Lopez – Veggie Mijas (activistas de la tierra)
  • Alfonzo Chavez – Food justice advocate, Flowers and Bullets
  • Neza Xiuhtecutli – Farmworkers Association, Florida

Free workshop at farmers market shares how to make your own personal care items

Make Your Own
Personal Care Items
12 – 2 p.m. Sat. Sept. 12
Market hours: 11am. -4p.m.
Southeast Area Farmers’ Market at MLK Park,
900 Fuller Ave. SE 49506

Are you tired of paying too much for your personal care items? Does the list of chemical ingredients scare you? (It should!) Come to the Southeast Area Farmers’ Market Saturday and learn how to make your own!

Ms. Yvonne Woodard, market manager and vendor, has been making her own personal care products for years. She started doing so because of her health — she simply could not physically tolerate store-bought, chemical laden products.

Stop by and learn her tried-and-true recipes for the products living closest to your body!

DTE Energy will be at the market sharing energy saving resources. Urban Core Collective will be helping patrons register to vote.