It's a crazy idea we know, but at SPEAK we believe that UK aid should go towards helping the worlds' poor produce more food to feed themselves and not go towards organisations and mechanisms which are actually having the opposite effects...
However, in our journey exploring agribusiness, we've been learning about its effects on farming communities and the environment. From land grabbing, seed patenting, to an increasing dependence on toxic pesticides, we've heard a lot of scary stories.
As if the agribusiness companies weren't making enough of a mess of things by themselves, it turns out that the UK government Department for International Development (set up to eliminate world poverty) is actively promoting agribusiness companies across the continent of Africa. Read SPEAKS summary HERE and find out more from this shocking War on Want report. The UK has taken the role of heading a group called the 'New Alliance for Investment and Food Security', which is pushing through the initiative, billed as ‘investment in African agriculture’, DfID has ignored the tremendous ails of agribusiness companies who time and time again have taken away the power and dignity of farming communities .
Instead of empowering producers in poorer countries, DfID’s support for agribusiness is handing even more power to multinational corporations, taking power away from African farming communities, and perpetuating environmentally destructive farming methods.
Despite the catestrophic injustice of the process what the New Alliance is carrying out, it has gone largely under the public radar...
SPREAD THE NEWS ABOUT WHAT IS HAPPENING and LET DFID KNOW WHAT WE THINK..
SPEAK are gathering together with partner organisations around the world to SPEAK out against this injustice. We think DfID should invest in agro-ecological projects that empower poor farming communities, rather than lining the pockets of profiteering multinational corporations.
We are pioneering a photo petition- profile picture actitivey. This involves people taking photos of themselves with messages to DfID, telling them to stop supporting corporate giants, and to invest instead in agro-ecological, sustainable, and indigenous agricultural methods. They then put this as their profile picture to spread the news to their friends and family about what is happening.
What can you do?...
1) Join us and poor farmers around the world to SPEAK out for food justice! Tell DfID what you think by joining our photo petition.
- Write your message to DfID on a piece of paper. Stuck for what to write? There are some suggestions in the attached document below
- Write your name and city at the bottom of the paper
- Take a picture showing the whole paper and your beautiful face
- When you're done, email your images to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Once your photo has been uploaded onto the Speak facebook page then tag yourself and put this as your profile picture for all to see. We will have the link to this page as the 'description' of the image so that all your friends and family can easity get involved
2) Get creative!! We aren't going to put a box around your creativity by telling you how to do it... But run free SPEAKies - create your little hearts away!
3) Take the photo petition to the masses:
LET THEM COME TO YOU!
Put on an event which you invite people, show a relelvent film such as this one and then take a photo petition image of all those who attend!
GO OUT TO THEM!
You can take the photo petition to the streets or to your campus:
- Create a photo board! We've all seen those sea-side boards where you put your heads through the holes of an image board. why not create your own agribusiness board and get people to stick their paper message onto the board and stick their heads through the gaps?
- Create a photo booth. An area with different props for people to don and a white board or chalk board for them to write a message on and stand behind.