September 2020
Global Seed Savers Newsletter
Seven Months of Lock-down in the Philippines
Reflections from Philippines Executive Director, Karen Lee Hizola
“We don’t move on from grief.
We move forward with it.”

Nora McInerny’s funny, yet strikingly poignant TED Talk was full of the kind of wisdom that I needed to hear. People have said that we are going through a collective grieving, the likes of which we have never experienced before. Five months and nineteen days since our first lock-down, I’m trying to move forward again after giving in to grief a few weeks ago.

During the now almost six months of this new reality I’ve learned that hope is a beautiful thing. Hope is what our farmers and partner communities teach us each day.

We, the Global Seed Savers Team, have learned that now is not the time to be silent. Not this time. This time, we fight! We continue to let our voices be heard through the cacophony that tries to drown out truth and justice. In one of the meetings I recently attended in the fight against the entry of GMOs in the Southern Philippines, one of our colleagues, while talking about working with certain groups, referred to herself as expendable. She was fully aware of what she was risking. That struck something in me. Nobody is expendable. Not anywhere. Not in the work we do. So now, we are taking a clearer and stronger stand. Fighting for seed sovereignty is akin to fighting for freedom. It is resisting the influences of colonization. Seed sovereignty and freedom both have a high price. But giving up will cost so much more!

When we hold a seed in our hand, we hold the past, the present and the future. We’ve been propelled into a present that none of us expected. The seed is both a symbolic and literal redemption in this pivotal now. When seeds are shared by more hands there is a greater chance that the future we create is better. We’re proud to be holding the line with steadfast and dedicated colleagues everywhere. Relationships based on trust and the principle of mutual aid are the strongest and best ones. When we are grieving collectively, it helps to know that when we reach our lowest low, someone will hold the flame for us. We move forward with grief but we move forward together. Seed on!
10th Annual Virtual Nourish Celebration
We look forward to seeing our world community for our Virtual 10th Annual Nourish Celebration on Friday, October 23rd 6:30-7:30pm Mountain Standard Time/ Saturday, October 24th 8:30-9:30am Philippines Time.

The celebration will include dynamic speakers, an online silent auction, and more! 

Denver Metro Tickets include delivery or pick-up of delicious Filipino Food from our friends at Orange Crunch Filipino Staples and Delights and GSS branded Swag! Join us for a fun and interactive virtual celebration with our community around the world! Tickets available now! Prices increase after October 1st!

Thanks to our Generous Event Sponsors
Interested in Sponsorship Opportunities? Please contact Sherry to learn more!
Grant Funding Received
Sacred Fire Foundation

We are thrilled to share the news that the Benguet Association of Seed Savers (BASS) has been awarded $4.500 from the Sacred Fire Foundation. The funds will support their on-going Indigenous seed saving efforts and expansion of their seed library in Tublay, Benguet.

Sacred Fire Foundation supports the continuance of Indigenous wisdom and strives to raise awareness about the values of Indigenous world-views as a way to effect social change and transform the world in which we live. Learn more here.
International Foundation

We are also received our largest grant to date, $20,000 from the International Foundation!

This tremendous support will enable us to launch our Aduyon Phase 2 Programs: expanding local seed production levels and launching new urban gardening initiatives in the greater Metro Manila Area. We are excited to see our work continue to grow and positively impact more Filipino communities by building food and seed sovereignty!
Food Tank Live Interview
with GSS Founder & US Executive Director
Last week Sherry Manning was interviewed on Food Tank: A Food Think Tank Food Talk Live Series by Danielle Nierenberg.

Food Tank is a profit organization that highlights hope and success in agriculture. They feature innovative ideas that are already working on the ground, in cities, in kitchens, in fields, and in laboratories. These innovations need more attention, research, and ultimately funding to be replicated and scaled-up. If you missed the interview you can watch it here!
Welcome New Operations Intern
Avery Moyler
Avery is joining GSS as our Operations Intern for the fall. She will be involved in planning our Virtual 10th Annual Nourish Celebration next month.

Avery attended the University of Virginia, where she majored in Global Development Studies as an undergraduate and went on to receive a Master of Public Policy. She has always been passionate about sustainable agriculture, food sovereignty, and farmer and farm worker rights. She became especially interested in seed protection after meeting Cary Fowler, the founder of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. Avery is excited to be working with GSS to support smallholder farmers and foster a sustainable, local food system. Join us in welcoming Avery to the family!