Celebrating our history

Dionne John invites local people to get involved with Black History Month

Marjorie Whyte and Dionne John outside Edmonton Methodist Church
Marjorie Whyte and Dionne John outside Edmonton Methodist Church

During Black History Month this October, Grassroots members are holding a series of events to celebrate black heritage, history and food.

Grassroots is a network of independent foodbanks and community pantries that have come together since June 2020 to focus on addressing food injustice and supporting people experiencing food poverty, with improved access to cultural food.

Three founder members – Together Our Community Survives (TOCS), Nigerian Catholic Community, and Daisybeats African Community Support – have joined forces with other community organisations to inform, inspire and connect people through food for Black History Month.

For Deacon Jacqueline Esama-John, from the Methodist church; Nichola Lauder, from Edmonton Seventh-day Adventist Church; and Hamida Ali, from Children and Young Persons Service; the importance of culturally influenced food in Edmonton, where more than a quarter of the residents are black, makes a tremendous difference to improving the lives, health and wellbeing of families who use their foodbanks.

On Saturday 16th October, both Fore Street and Ordnance Road pantries will be offering taster sessions of authentic African, Caribbean and Asian food and recipe cards, developed with support from Enfield Council and Enfield Food Alliance members, as part of the celebrations.

On Friday 22nd October, from 9am–2pm, The Pantry in Bounces Road is hosting an event with traditional Somali food and cultural dancing. Sadiya Mohamoud, from Phoenix Family Support Service, said: “[You can also] learn more about Samafal Families Association’s Black History Month project, which includes a deep-dive interview with black women in Enfield to learn more about their challenges and lived experiences.”

On Saturday 23rd October at Forty Hall Farm, Grassroots will be holding a ‘Food Fest’ which will focus on the significant role food plays in enriching cultural identity and being a catalyst for connecting black people to their history and culture. We will be bringing together chefs, food businesses and surplus food redistributors to take part in a farm tour, cultural food talks, demonstrations and food tastings.

For more information about Grassroots:
Email [email protected]
Instagram @grassrootshub