Come to the Table 2017 Conference

  • Durham Convention Center Durham, NC

Come to the Table 2017 Conference
Bridging Divides: Cultivating Food & Faith Connections

*** Register by March 6th: http://rafiusa.org/cttt/ *** 

* Registration: $30 for full-day conference, includes lunch
* Scholarships and travel stipends are available! Contact Carson, carson@rafiusa.org

The Come to the Table Conference is a biennial gathering of food, faith, and farm advocates focused on relieving hunger and strengthening local, sustainable agriculture in North Carolina. This year's conference theme is "Bridging Divides: Cultivating Food & Faith Connections." Participants will have the opportunity to attend workshops covering theology and food, community development, racial equity, and food and farm policy. This year, we welcome former NFL player turned NC farmer and hunger relief activist Jason Brown as our keynote speaker. Come to the Table was founded in 2007 and is a project of the Rural Advancement Foundation International.

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Join us for the sixth convening of the Come to the Table Conference on March 16th, 2017 at the Durham Convention Center. We look forward to gathering with community members, faith leaders, farmers, gardeners, farm workers, hunger relief agencies, and many more groups for workshops and presentations from clergy and community leaders on a variety of topics. As always, we look forward to engaging conversations and strategy sessions on relieving hunger and strengthening local and sustainable agriculture.

At this year's conference, we will explore both the history and present state of our food system: how and why food is produced and distributed the way it is, and how faith communities can support a system where both farmers and consumers are thriving. Attendees will both hear from experts in the field, and be asked to share their own experience and wisdom as participants in the food system.

Keynote Speaker
We are pleased to welcome Jason Brown as this year’s keynote speaker! Jason left a successful career as a lineman in the NFL to become a farmer in eastern North Carolina. After his departure from professional football, Jason moved back to the state and purchased a 1,000-acre farm in Louisburg. He and his wife Dr. Tay Brown have dedicated themselves to aiding in local hunger relief efforts. Their farm, First Fruits Farm, has made national headlines for its donation of hundreds of thousands of pounds of food to those in need. Thousands of volunteers have lent helping hands in their harvest and gleaning events. In their work with Wisdom for Life Ministries and First Fruits Farm, Jason and his wife Tay are demonstrating how to live a life of purpose and how to promote community development through agriculture.

Workshop tracks will include:

Building Strong Foundations—skills and core knowledge for community work and hunger relief

Theology & Food—interfaith conversation from our community of practice on broadening our lens for food and faith

Farmer Voices & Cooperative Development—voices from the field, stories from farmers less visible in the food system, and cooperative projects

Getting Food to the Table—a closer look at production and process in food system: issues affecting farmworkers and food workers

Policy—a dual look at agricultural policy and hunger relief

And much more!