“Advocating for and supporting all levels of food security and food sovereignty in local, tribal, regional, national and international arenas”
The Native American Food Sovereignty Alliance (NAFSA) is a 501 c3 non-profit organization that was officially incorporated in 2014 following two years of efforts to develop an organization and mission with input from hundreds of Native food producers and organizations.
NAFSA has grown out of a nearly decade-long, organic process of networking and constituency-building. NAFSA was created to bring grassroots practitioners, communities (rural, remote and urban), and organizations together along with Tribal governments to share, promote and support best practices and policies that enhance dynamic Native food systems.
NAFSA was an idea which incubated during a Taos County Economic Development Corporation grant from Oxfam America in 2005. Through this grant, the funder was interested in bringing together grassroots Native food activists over an extended period of time to see a greater impact on Native food systems. During these convenings, participants from 13 tribes came together to share their knowledge and skills in agriculture, seed saving and foods. These activities resulted in the first attempted seed sovereignty declaration and a completed Food Sovereignty Declaration with a Call to Action.
In January 2013 NAFSA initiated a multi-platform survey of our membership to define our program areas:
- Resource Development
- Education/Health through cooking
- Peer-to-Peer Mentoring
- Youth Engagement
- Reestablishment of Indigenous Trade Routes
NAFSA was officially convened as an organization in 2012 as First Nations Development Institute (FNDI) re-granted W.K. Kellogg Foundation funds to various organizations under its Native Agriculture and Food Systems Initiative. During these years, leadership acted as ambassadors for NAFSA at national and international meetings were members were recruited to join our efforts. The NAFSA Founding Council met for the first time in early October 2013, and have met annually since that time to review processes, programs and update the strategic plan.
NAFSA’s strategic plan was refined in October 2016 to include providing assistance and peer mentoring through several means, including Training programs, Train the Trainer, Curriculum for long distance learning, Publications and videos highlighting tribal community’s success stories of food sovereignty systems.
NAFSA incorporated as a 501c3, not for profit organization in 2013. NAFSA is also incorporated with the Navajo Nation since 2014.