Why organizational values? These are the aspirational values of the Oregon Farm to School & School Garden Network’s (OFSSGN) Staff and Steering Committee.
We are articulating these values across a network of many partners as an opportunity to lead into a shared understanding of how we do our work. We invite conversation about our values as they are meant to not only guide our work, but also to spark conversation. We encourage you, our network, to ask questions. Whether to gain clarification or further examination of our expressed values. Please feel free to connect with us to engage in a broader dialogue.
EQUITY: We believe that all youth have the right to culturally relevant, healthy food. We center historically disenfranchised groups as a core strategy for ensuring access for all.
JUSTICE: We believe we have a responsibility to work to shift power and resources to historically disenfranchised groups and eliminating barriers to access to nutrient dense, culturally relevant food.
VALUE OF COMMUNITY KNOWLEDGE & WISDOM: We honor and are guided by existing knowledge, experience and expertise of members of the network and other stakeholders as a way to build collective power. We value and hold differences as a strength.
COURAGE: We recognize that we must continue to reflect, learn, and adjust to respond to the community. We seek the courage to fully embrace discomfort, challenge systems of oppression, and embrace and be curious about the complexity of food justice issues.
TRANSPARENCY & ACCOUNTABILITY - We believe in being clear and transparent in how we do our work, who we serve, and our goals and priorities. We work to ensure that in these efforts we are accountable to our network members, the communities we serve, and our mission, by aligning our work with current research and effective practices, engaging in ongoing conversation with our stakeholders, and continuously seeking to improve how we do our work.
RELATIONSHIP-CENTERED: We move at the speed of trust* - As a network, our ability to work collectively exists only when we have trusting relationships. We center integrity, humility and respect in cultivating authentic relationships that are not transactional - not about what we get from each other.
LOVE: We believe in love of each other, the environment and land, community and their connectedness. When it gets tough, love is what drives this work. “Never forget that justice is what love looks like in public.” - Cornel West
*We learned of this from the influential work of Adrienne Marie Brown