Submission deadline extended to May 13, 2019.
Submission deadline extended to May 13, 2019.
Our fourth bi-annual conference will be the first Closing the Hunger Gap conference located in the South, hosted in Raleigh, North Carolina, by the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle and the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina. This location provides an opportunity to examine the region’s history, current climate crisis, rich cultural, agricultural, and culinary heritage, as well as the construction of racial inequities that still exist today. We expect to bring together more than 700 attendees representing emergency food providers, representatives from farming agencies, and nonprofit/government organizations focused on health, education, and food justice. The conference will be a vibrant, diverse, and inspiring event where attendees have ample time to learn new skills, discuss innovative programs, network with their peers, and deepen our shared analysis of the root causes of hunger and strategies to address it.
General Conference Information
Date: September 3-5, 2019
Location: Raleigh Convention Center, Raleigh, NC
The three-day conference will address root causes of hunger, racial equity, systemic and policy issues, and map a holistic path towards resiliency and justice in ensuring that all persons have the right to affordable, available, nutritious and culturally appropriate food. Through site visits, workshops, regional caucuses, and inspiring plenaries, we will learn from and challenge each other while examining hunger at the intersection of climate change, race, and poverty. We plan to deliver tangible learning takeaways to participants. Join us as we grow our membership and develop a strong national alliance of anti-hunger and food access organizations shifting from narratives and models rooted in charity to those working towards social justice and an end to hunger.
We expect approximately 700 or more attendees from all aspects of the food system. While at least half our attendees will likely be emergency food providers and their members and clients, we anticipate representation from social service nonprofits, research institutions, community-based organizations, educational and governmental institutions, farmer agencies, policymakers, and other stakeholders.
Attendees work at many different scales, including nationally focused membership organizations, statewide networks, local nonprofits, allied businesses, and individuals working at the local level. Many attendees will be national leaders in their fields, while others will be local innovators, emerging leaders, or people just starting out. For introductory and general knowledge sessions, please try to use plain language and limit the use of acronyms and jargon to make your session accessible to all participants. Expect up to 100 attendees per session; estimates based on registration will be provided to presenters prior to the conference.
The goal of the 2019 CTHG conference is to move hunger relief organizations toward strategies promoting social justice and addressing the root causes of hunger by looking into the past at our history and heritage, to our future as the climate changes, and bringing a racial equity lens to all we do.
Conference Theme: Roots. Justice. Resiliency
ROOTS. We understand that the root causes of hunger are racial and economic inequalities. Holding this conference in the South makes us especially aware of how history shapes these current inequities in our society, as we live with the legacy of slavery, but also the promise of the Civil Rights Movement.
JUSTICE. We envision a time when all people can determine their own futures; when nutritious food is recognized as a human right; and when there is a political will to end hunger and its systemic root causes and all people have access to healthy, socially, economically and environmentally just and sustainable food. To achieve this vision means bringing our attention to the role that racial and economic injustice plays in perpetuating hunger and exploitative food systems.
RESILIENCY. CTHG understands the necessity for systems change, and embraces the opportunity for all communities to cultivate the skills, knowledge and coalitions necessary to foster resiliency through systems change. Our country has faced devastating fires, floods, hurricanes, and drought, all of which disproportionately affect low wealth communities and communities of color. When a climate disaster occurs, we need to respond to the immediate crisis, adapt our current systems, and also take advantage of the moment of disruption that provides us the opportunity to rebuild systems within a social justice framework.
SHIFTING POWER. CTHG embraces a network and culture led by and in full support of people directly impacted by economic and racial injustices, hunger and poverty. We strive to nurture a community of shared learning and collective power. Presentations in this track will offer examples of community organizing, participatory decision making, grassroots leadership, community resiliency, and amplification of voices of those directly affected by hunger and poverty.
ROOT CAUSES AND INTERSECTIONALITY. CTHG recognizes poverty as a systemic failing of our society. Changes to the system are needed to move beyond temporary fixes toward the building of power among individuals and collective efforts to remove barriers within our communities. We strive to deeply understand the root causes of hunger and poverty and develop appropriate solutions to address the root causes. Presentations in this track will address challenges and opportunities at the intersection of hunger and other societal issues including racial disparities, economic justice, food systems, health (physical, mental and spiritual), and climate change.
TRANSFORMING SYSTEMS AND STRUCTURES. CTHG recognizes food as a human right and champions this right within communities. Food is essential to human health (physical, spiritual, emotional, mental, as well as environmental). We consider food foundational to relationships, community and culture. Presentations in this track will focus on alternative approaches to ending hunger, frameworks for food as a fundamental right, advocacy, and shifting organizational structures and practices from charity to social and racial justice.
ALLIANCES/SOCIAL MOVEMENT BUILDING. CTHG is part of a growing, national network of collaborators and learners that engages with and support movements led by the people most affected by hunger and poverty. One of our goals as a network is to build and support a grassroots effort of hunger relief organizations shifting from solutions to hunger rooted in charity to those that strive for social justice.. Presentations in this track will highlight established and emergent grassroots social movements working at the intersection of a variety of social justice issues related to the root causes of hunger; for instance, food and farming, labor, climate, immigration, and race. Workshops will highlight successful models of intersectional organizing and strategizing and discuss challenges and opportunities for collaboration across movements.
NARRATIVE CHANGE. CTHG is creating a space that supports members in recognizing and facing uncomfortable truths in undertaking this work. Narrative change is a powerful tool for the network as we shift our own thinking around hunger and work to change the national and global narrative around what it will take to end hunger. Presentations in this track will provide critical analysis of current hunger narratives and offer tools for shifting the way we talk about hunger and our work.