When you ask yourself who holds the keys to world peace, you may not think of farmers. But in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK or North Korea), where bad weather makes crops hard to grow and political isolation makes help hard to come by, a farmer’s success can make a world of difference.
Linda Lewis, director of the American Friends Service Committee’s (AFSC) DPRK program, traveled to North Korea in the wake of political tensions this spring. Hers was the first American group to visit in some time, and our farm partners expressed joy that she still came.
Linda Lewis, AFSC's country representative for China and the DPRK (North Korea), describes her May 2013 trip to partner farms and organizations in North Korea, where farm managers are working to introduce sustainable practices and improve yields.
The ancient annual procession and blessing of San Ysidro y Santa María de la Cabeza will commence at 10am, on Saturday, May 18th at the corner of Isleta and Arenal, SW. Prayers to these traditional guardians of rain, water, and farmers will take place at La Plazita Farm, the procession's end, found at the corner of Arenal and Lopez, SW. Call 505-842-7343 for more information. Please bring seeds if you wish to participate in an exchange.
AFSC helped organize the annual San Ysidro Day celebration with partners the South Valley Acequia Assoication, La Plazita Institute, and Agri-Cultura Network. This tradition, held in New Mexico for 400 years, celebrates San Ysidro, the patron saint of farmers. The ceremony includes blessings of the land and water by indigenous elders of the Isleta Pueblo, Dine, Red Wolf Clan as well as Catholics and Penitente brothers.
The Iowa International Center is sponsoring a showing of Harvest of Grief, a film highlighting the plight of Indian farmers driven to suicide by globalization. This program is free and open to the public.
The hour-long documentary examines a wave of suicides among farmers, mostly in the Punjab region of India. Once considered the country’s prosperous breadbasket, the region has seen, by some accounts, as many as 40,000 suicides over the past 20 years.
You are what you eat -- and everything on your plate is corn.
This is the third film in the “Examining Modern Life” series, sponsored by the AFSC, and concerns the topics of Iowa farming, government subsidies, and nutrition.
Engrossing and eye-opening, King Corn is a fun and crusading journey into the digestive tract of our fast-food nation. Fueled by curiosity and a dash of naiveté, college buddies Ian Cheney and Curt Ellis return to their ancestral home of Greene, Iowa, to find out how the modest corn kernel conquered America.
The handbook features information and lessons on planning a garden, soil preparation, water, seeds, plants, insects, harvesting, winter production and food systems. Interspersed in the lessons are stories by the Advisory Council about farming in New Mexico, including using the acequia system, chile harvesting, and the tradition of San Ysidro Day. Photographs of familiar New Mexico landmarks and hand drawings by local New Mexico artists add to the charm of the handbook.
AFSC is a Quaker organization devoted to service, development, and peace programs throughout the world. Our work is based on the belief in the worth of every person, and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice. Learn more
Where we work
AFSC has offices around the world. To see a complete list see the Where We Work page.