A Case for JOY Activism – Kelly D. Carlisle

Let’s start with my RAGE and a reminder of why we do what we do.

I know that I probably don’t have to tell you, but ANV is ALL ABOUT joy.

Every single thing Acta Non Verba does is INTENTIONALLY designed to bring maximum delight to everyone who interacts with us and participate in our programs.

Whether it’s our Camp For Grown Folx Benefit, which was such a hit with all ages last year, that we’re bringing it back – bigger and better than ever next month, our award-winning Camp ANV, which ensures that ALL children can experience the JOY of camp, or ANV’s BeetBox CSA, which connects our local community members with not only our THREE farms, but also farmers of color on the central coast and in the central valley!

We believe that ABUNDANCE and JOY are worth fighting for. And as a staff, board, organization and members of the community, we DO fight for them. Daily. What else are we LIVING for?

Now, about that rage…

A golden opportunity arose recently. It required someone attached to ANV who was under 24 years of age to manage it… and I had the perfect person in mind.

It required a video “audition” and I encouraged a young person that I care about and will protect till the death of me to make that video. 

The young person asked what they should talk about. I pointed them towards camp, which they are VERY familiar with. I said: “How about how transformative Camp ANV has been and how we are resisting oppression through joy?

The young person agreed and created an 10 minute video, with the understanding that this WASN’T the final product… That they were simply giving an EXAMPLE of their speech patterns and articulation.

The response was that our young person, someone who had seen and experienced TOO MUCH for someone not even 21 years old… was not ENOUGH of an activist. The requesting body had a LIST, of previously undisclosed activist THEMES that they “encouraged” our young person to pursue… and offered to “help” our young person tease out.

This young person was confused. As was I. 

Angry, but not surprised.

The young person asked for the help that was offered. There was no response until last week, when the requesting body let our young person down “gently” and offered a free ticket to… “The Show”. (My words, not theirs.) 

The reason I’m writing about this is because I have found that TOO OFTEN, folks want to hear about the pain and suffering of BIPOC.

…And that is certainly there. But what about the joy? What about the EXCELLENCE? What about the RESILIENCE?! What about Making a WAY out of No Way?! Is THAT not a form of activism and resistance?

Yes, the Climate, and YES, BLACK LIVES MATTER. And ABSOLUTELY, STOP. Asian. Hate.

But I would (and WANT TO) argue that JOY. Delight. Jubilation. Are forms of activism in their own right.

Our children need to KNOW THAT.

I mentioned to Aaron, ANV’s newly promoted Deputy Director (send him congratulations HERE!!) that in America, it’s hard to find ANYONE who actually likes, let alone LOVES Black Women. 

He replied that we have Janetria and Latrice to thank for that. They gave him hugs and always had snacks to share and were the dopest classmates he had in elementary school.

Joy. Sharing.  Education. Love. Openness.

ALL of these are forms of activism in a world that continues to try to diminish us and fights the concept of being bigger and better than we ARE.

AND so I ask again: What about JOY Activism?!

Aaron almost made me cry when he was able to name the two young Black girls who taught him that Black Women are PEOPLE and to be honored.

Janetria and Latrice I honor YOU. Thank you for the affirmation and validation to Aaron and, by extension, me. 

…and to this young person, who put their time, energy and heart out there: I am sorry. You NEVER have to bare your soul, pain and struggle for me, ANV or an audience.

We love you as you are and will protect you, yours and your JOY -always.

Aluta Continua  ~ The Struggle Continues. 

✊🏿💜

 

Acta Non Verba announces RJ Martin, AAMS® as ANV’s Youth Financial Investment Advisor

RJ Martin began his career at Edward Jones in 2012. As the son of an educator that taught special-needs children for over 20 years, he has taken the same care and attention he learned from his mother and has applied those skills in guiding his clients as a financial advisor. He is a true educator at heart, and his first and foremost goal is to provide financial education for my clients and his community. He does not believe there is a one-size-fits-all investment strategy, so I work to create a customized strategy to fit the needs of his clients who are at various points of their personal and financial lives.

RJ’s interest in entrepreneurship began at an early age. When he was a teen, he ran a profitable online business selling merchandise, and paid his way through college by investing in the stock market and operating his own landscaping business. His commitment to the community began as an undergraduate when he developed a financial literacy campaign designed to educate and inform under-served communities and individuals.

He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in accounting from North Carolina State University. After graduation, he spent the early years of his career as a revenue agent for the United States’ Department of Treasury, an internal auditor for RBC Bank and a fraud and investigations associate for PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLC. He received his AAMS designation in 2018 and also holds an insurance license.

RJ loves his work and helping clients develop financial literacy and build financial wealth. Building trust and long-lasting relationships with his clients is of the utmost importance to him.

Acta Non Verba is excited to have RJ as a resource to help our youth and their families navigate the sometimes murky world of investing and financial literacy. We are grateful to RJ Martin for assisting ANV in its mission to try to break the chains of generational poverty and underinvestment of the youth in our community and make a brighter future for all children for their futures.

Acta Non Verba Announces Shannon Wirth, FNP as Organizational and Program Medical Advisor

Shannon Wirth is a Family Nurse Practitioner dedicated to the service and support of her community.  A Bay Area native, she was educated at UCSC where she earned her Bachelor’s in Molecular, Cellular, Developmental Biology, and later at Samuel Merritt University where she earned her Master’s of Science in Nursing.  Shannon has over ten years experience working in community clinics in Oakland and San Francisco, and is particularly dedicated to youth through her work in school based health.  Shannon is excited to embark on this partnership in support of youth at ANV!

Acta Non verba is thrilled to announce that Shannon will be working closely with our Executive Director and Program Directors to ensure that all of the organizations work is rooted in the latest science, knowledge and best practices to keep our staff and participants safe and well!

Phat Beets CSA Program is Becoming ANV’s BeetBox CSA (Letter)

 

 

 

 

August 11,  2020

Dear Phat Beets Community,

We thank you for your support of the Beet Box CSA, and want to give our community an update on the future of the Beet Box.  Since 2011, you have supported so many of our programs, farmers and communities, with your donations, purchases, and your volunteer time. It is without a doubt you have been the engine that has kept our CSA program alive, and allowed us to fulfill our mission: connecting small farmers of color to flatland communities and creating equitable access to healthy affordable produce.  Phat Beets has decided to move forward with a transition of our Beet Box CSA to Acta Non Verba: Youth Urban Farm Project (ANV).

Acta Non Verba is an organization based in East Oakland, focused on serving youth and their families through urban farming.  We are confident that ANV will use the Beet Box to increase food access, support our farmers, patients and families at La Clinica, and low income Beet Boxers. At the same time, all Beet Box CSA profits will be deposited into local youth’s educational savings accounts; bridging the generational wealth gap and saving for their individual educational pursuits. 

In hopes of making the program better than ever before, we’d really appreciate it if you complete a short survey (https://bit.ly/ANVBeetBoxSurvey) letting us know how we can make your CSA subscription even more enjoyable. 

Here are some fast facts you need to know:

  1. There will be a price increase for Full, Half, Fruit and Fruit, Honey, & Nut Shares starting September 1, 2020.
  2. All CSAs will be picked up at OMNI until deliveries begin again – we will reach out when they do.
  3. The missed pickup window for CSA shares is 10am-12pm the following day (Wednesday or Sunday). Any shares not picked up will be donated to a local women’s shelter.
  4. Emails will be responded to within 2-3 days.  For urgent questions, you can reach us at BeetBoxCSA@anvfarm.org or call 762-BEETBOX (762-233-8269).

The Beet Box CSA distribution will continue at the Omni Commons in North Oakland, and ANV will maintain offices at the Omni. The CSA program is currently in transition until August 24th- and we thank you for your patience as we undergo this exciting time.   

Now, more than ever, our communities need health, power, and solidarity. Lettuce turnip ‘dem beets! 

In Gratitude,

Acta Non Verba: Youth Urban Farm Project

Phat Beets Produce

ANV Brunch Challenge! Meet the Commentators

Meet The Brunch Commentators!

Kana Azhari (Coach Kay) is a healing artist, organizer and vegan chef.  She loves working with young people and believes in the infinite value, beauty and greatness of their spirit. Coach Kay is constantly finding gratitude in daily meditation, healthy diet, fasting, culture, dance/ movement and relaxation.  She works professionally with clients from around the world to improve their diets, lifestyle choices and self care practices.

Chef Liesha grew up in Oakland and began cooking at the age of nine. She joined the Navy when she was 17 years old and traveled the world cooking for thousands of sailors. After leaving the Navy she went on to work in restaurants and hotels before starting her personal chef service. She went on to earn a bachelors degree in nutrition from Arizona State University. She is a master food preserver, and an advocate for culturally relevant representation in health and wellness.DeAngela Cooks, M.A. is the co-founder of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) firm The Mosaic Collaborative, LLC.  DeAngela is a passionate public speaker of 20 years, professional master of ceremonies, an acclaimed Diversity, Equity and Inclusion workshop facilitator, and educator

Hailing from Southern California, she embraces her intersectional identities.  As a Black, queer, woman, who is a parent, and has been a minister and stand-up comic, she brings a wealth of experiences to her work; infusing education with elocution, wit and a splash of sarcasm. She has collaborated on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiatives with The County of Alameda, BayLegal, FoodCorps, Facing History and Ourselves, Chico State, Designory, Golden Crown Literary Society, San Francisco Department of Probation, the western regional housing authorities, and the Pacific Center for Human Growth, just to name a few. She has also been a guest lecturer and keynote speaker on the topic of multiculturalism for various organizations and conferences.

After knocking out her Bachelor’s Degree in Philosophy and Religion, she decided to graduate with her Masters in Marriage and Family Therapy. I guess it’s safe to say she’s a sap.

During her downtime, you can find her encouraging parents to stop counting their toddler’s age in months and devising a scheme to become unidentifiable by her student loan providers. Her superpower is utilizing her humor to help people reflect their sameness while appreciating their differences.

To find out more about DeAngela’s speaking engagements,  workshops and event hosting, visit her website at www.TheMosaicCollaborative.com.

Matthew Raiford Grew up breaking the dirt and trading crookneck squash for sweet potatoes, raising hogs and chickens, and only going to the grocery store for sundries. After a military career then graduation from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York, Raiford returned to the farm in 2011 to continue the traditions of his Gullah-Geechee heritage and to create an authentic farm-to-fork experience for locals. He received certification as an ecological horticulturalist from the University of California’s Santa Cruz Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems.

He served until recently as the program coordinator and associate professor of culinary arts at the College of Coastal Georgia. In 2015, Raiford, the former executive chef at Little St. Simon’s Resort, and his partner, Jovan Sage, a food alchemist, opened The Farmer and the Larder on Newcastle Street, helping jumpstart the revival of Brunswick’s historic downtown. Raiford has appeared in Southern Living, Golden Isles, Paprika Southern, and Savannah magazines, and is a frequent presenter at food and wine festivals throughout the country.

ANV Cooking Challenge: Brunch! Celebrity Chef, Alice Waters & Griselda Cooney

Alice Waters is a chef, author, food activist, and the founder and owner of Chez Panisse Restaurant in Berkeley, California, which first opened its doors in 1971. She has been a champion of local sustainable agriculture for over four decades. In 1995 she founded the Edible Schoolyard Project, which advocates for a free organic school lunch for all children and a sustainable food curriculum in every public school. She has been Vice President of Slow Food International since 2002. She conceived and helped create the Yale Sustainable Food Project in 2003, and the Rome Sustainable Food Project at the American Academy in Rome in 2007. Her honors include election as a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2007; the Harvard Medical School’s Global Environmental Citizen Award, which she shared with Kofi Annan in 2008; induction into the French Legion of Honor in 2010; and induction into the National Woman’s hall of Fame in 2017. In 2015 she was awarded the National Humanities Medal by President Obama, proving that eating is a political act, and that the table is a powerful means to social justice and positive change. Alice was most recently awarded the honor of “Cavaliere dell’Ordine al Merito della Repubblica Italiana” in 2019.  Alice is the author of fifteen books, including New York Times bestsellers The Art of Simple Food I & II, The Edible Schoolyard: A Universal Idea, and, a memoir, Coming to My Senses: The Making of a Counterculture Cook.

Griselda Cooney

The Edible Schoolyard Project

Senior Chef Teacher & Family Engagement Manager 

At the age of seven, I immigrated to the United States from Mexico. I moved to a farm in Sonoma County, and realized the new environment wasn’t so different from my old home in Jalostoticlan, Jalisco. My parents still planted, grew, and harvested the familiar foods from my homeland; from cactus, chili peppers and aloe to corn and tomatoes.

As a cook, I am self-taught and learned traditional Mexican cooking from my mother. I learned how to plan and prepare meals from fresh, humble ingredients, and to make use of everything in order to maximize flavor and minimize waste. I am a mother of three and come from a large family where cooking is shared and enjoyed by all ages. Within the past 12 years, working with The Edible Schoolyard Project, I have seen many different age groups, races, and backgrounds collaborate and have learned that teaching and learning in the kitchen is intertwined with all aspects of life.

Get your tickets here: bit.ly/ANVBrunch-Cooking-Challenge

ANV Cooking Challenge: Brunch! Celebrity Chef, Bryant Terry

Bryant Terry is a James Beard Award-Winning chef, educator, and author renowned for his activism to create a healthy, just, and sustainable food system. Since 2015 he has been the Chef-in-Residence at the Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) in San Francisco where he creates public programming at the intersection of food, farming, health, activism, art, culture, and the African Diaspora. In regard to his work, Bryant’s mentor Alice Waters says, “Bryant Terry knows that good food should be an everyday right and not a privilege.” San Francisco Magazine included Bryant among 11 Smartest People in the Bay Area Food Scene, and Fast Company named him one of 9 People Who Are Changing the Future of Food.

Vegetable Kingdom, Bryant’s fifth book, will be published by Ten Speed Press/Penguin Random House in February 2020. His last book, Afro-Vegan, was published in 2014. Just 2 months after being released, it was named one of the best cookbooks of 2014 by Amazon.com. That December it was nominated for an NAACP Award in the Outstanding Literary Work category. Bryant is also the author of the critically acclaimed Vegan Soul Kitchen: Fresh, Healthy, and Creative African-American Cuisine, which was named one of the best vegetarian/vegan cookbooks of the last 25 years by Cooking Light Magazine.

Bryant graduated from the Chef’s Training Program at the Natural Gourmet Institute for Health and Culinary Arts in New York City. He is a Ph.D. dropout who holds an M.A. in History with an emphasis on the African Diaspora from NYU, where he studied under Historian Robin D.G. Kelly. He lives in Oakland, California with his wife and two brilliant and beautiful children.

Get your tickets here: bit.ly/ANVBrunch-Cooking-Challenge

ANV Cooking Challenge: Brunch! Celebrity Chef, Nikki Shaw

Bringing her passion for food and appetite for adventure, celebrity Chef Nikki Shaw is committed to spreading awareness of and preventing heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure. She is a partner for the restaurants and concessions at Oakland International Airport. In addition to that, Chef Nikki is a trained media spokesperson specializing in recipe development and product endorsement for major corporations. She has been a featured chef for the American Diabetes Association, American Heart Association and Kaiser Permanente. She conducts healthy cooking demonstrations and educates communities about the importance of making smart food choices and staying physically active, on TV and in-person. 

Chef Nikki is a featured Media Chef for the Oakland A’s, promoting the teams Community Wellness Campaign. She is a featured Chef/Instructor for the Golden State Warriors community outreach programs, offering information and recipes to help prevent childhood obesity. She is the Chair of the Oakland Teen Empowerment Program, which teaches inner-city girls valuable life skills and helps them get into college. 

Chef Nikki has appeared on Food Network as a finalist on The Next Food Network Star and she was also featured on the hit VH1 show Basketball Wives

Chef Nikki graduated with honors from Howard University in Washington D.C. with a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism. She graduated as a Chef from the Southeastern Culinary Academy and completed her internship at Disney World in Orlando, Florida. She and her husband, former NBA player, reside in California with their children.

Get your tickets here: bit.ly/ANVBrunch-Cooking-Challenge

ANV Cooking Challenge: Brunch! Celebrity Chef Jennifer Booker

Southern-born, Jennifer Hill Booker traveled to Paris to study French cooking at Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts only to discover that rustic French and Southern dishes use many of the same ingredients. Using this as the basis for culinary exploration in her second cookbook, Dinner Déjà Vu: Southern Tonight, French Tomorrow. The author of Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent, uses one list of fresh ingredients to create two meals, one Southern and one French in her latest cookbook, resulting in less food waste and fewer trips to the market. Combined grocery lists also provide time-saving tools for recipes from cocktails to desserts and everything in between, drawing on the strengths of both regions makes recipes like Southern Berry Bramble Cocktail, Brown Butter Banana Pound Cake with Crème Anglaise, and Pimento Cheese Stuffed Deviled Eggs both approachable and delicious. A charming personality, she is also a mother of two who knows exactly what it takes to create enticing meals with limited time and ingredients.

Chef Jennifer’s culinary path has not always been a linear one. She earned her Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Tulsa; eighteen months later graduated first in her class with an Associate of Occupational Science from Oklahoma State Institute of Technology. Extensive travel while married to a United States Army Officer pushed Jennifer to blaze a trail that fit her unique situation-a female African American chef, living abroad. As a result, her first culinary company Your Resident Gourmet was born. During her time living in Germany, Jennifer honed her culinary talents by providing cooking classes for both military and German families. She was also able to fulfill a lifelong dream of attending Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Paris, where she proudly graduated top of her class. Twenty years later Jennifer finds herself once again blazing culinary trails as she wears many culinary hats as chef, reality TV personality, culinary educator, business owner and cookbook author.

She is an Impact Fellow with the James Beard Foundation, a Georgia Grown Executive Chef for the GA Department of Agriculture, the Culinary Explorer for the Georgia Department of Tourism and Travel, and is the founder of Cast Iron Chronicles dinner series. Chef Jennifer is an active member of the prestigious Atlanta chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier International, a member of SlowFood-Atlanta and of Atlanta’s No Kid Hungry Atlanta Society. Chef Jennifer currently sits on the James Beard Foundation Scholarship Committee.

Weaving her love of traditional Southern cuisine with her belief in incorporating healthy, seasonal foods and her classic French training, Chef Jennifer created a unique style of cooking that she terms Modern Southern Healthy Cuisine with a French Accent. Chef Jennifer shared this brand of cooking through her cooking segment ‘Chef Jenn to the Rescue,’ on CBS46’s Atlanta Plugged In, many television appearances, with original recipes in such publications as Waste Not Cookbook, Southern Living Magazine, Garden & Gun and Essence Magazine as well as her Food Network debut as a finalist on Cutthroat Kitchen. She has worked with such renowned chefs as Jeff Henderson, Tyler Florence, Tiffany Derry, Giadia Laurentis, Patrick Neely, Master Chef Daryl Shular and Mashama Bailey. Her website, ChefJenniferHillBooker.com provides information about healthy eating, food trends, culinary travel, and recipes that reflect her unique culinary point of view of Modern Southern Healthy Cuisine with a French Accent. Her cookbooks, Dinner Déjà Vu: Southern Tonight, French Tomorrow, and  Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent, are available at many national retailers including Pelican Publishing Company, Barnes and Noble and Amazon.

Chef Jennifer spends her free time in her kitchen, vegetable garden, or at her local farmers market. She currently resides in Lilburn, Georgia with her two daughters Jenelle and Regine and their KorgieJack, Pudge.

Get your tickets here: bit.ly/ANVBrunch-Cooking-Challenge

Meet Camp ANV ONLINE’s Outdoor Adventure Instructor: Clayton Anderson

Naturalist, Clayton Anderson

Clayton has been studying the natural world and natural history most of his life. He dreamed of being a naturalist since he was a boy.

After graduating from college with a BA in drawing and painting, he landed his first job as a naturalist for Lovelife Environmental Education Program.

He has worked for several environmental concerns since, including California State Parks, East Bay Regional Parks District and Alameda Resource Conservation District.

Currently, he is working for the Golden Gate Audubon as a Youth Education Program Manager.

He has worked as a naturalist for a cumulative 10 years. He loves what he does, and is always looking to educate others about the natural world and how it works.