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February 10, 2017

Hello SCI Activist,

Welcome to another week of updates and inspirations. Inside you’ll find two stories of the struggles of Native Americans - one is to take back their food system and another is to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline. Beyond that maybe you’ll get inspired to create a rain garden or plant more fruit trees in your next workcamp!

Decolonizing food access for Native Americans


Even in a wealthy country like the US, access to nutritious food can be close to impossible for some people. In general Native Americans of the US live in vast and sparsely populated reservation areas, which often lack typical infrastructure like grocery shops. Instead access is easier to fast food serving gas stations. Many people started eating unhealthy, after their ancestors got disconnected from their traditional diet during the colonization period.

However just like with defending water, awareness is rising on improving people's diets. There is a growing movement to create gardens and food forests on the reservations, which provide not only stress relief, but also fresh food! “Many Native Americans lack access to healthy food, but there’s a growing movement to change that” (Grist) 

Stand with Standing Rock


On Tuesday, the Army Corps of Engineers moved to approve the Dakota Access oil pipeline. They’re pushing it forward without completing the environmental impact study ordered in December, without any congressional notification period, and without any review of the hundreds of thousands of public comments that have already been submitted. The fight is on! “Dakota Access Pipeline to Get Final Approval, but Legal Fight Awaits” (Inside Climate News).

As simple and useful as a rain garden


If you are thinking of starting a community garden or would like to support one… or maybe even you just want to make the front lawn of your SCI office more interesting, consider building a rain garden! They are relatively simple constructions which retain water (but don’t create mosquito breeding puddles) and filter it thanks to deep-rooted native plants. You can read about more benefits on the Rain Garden Network web page and follow their 10-step instructions.

Back to the trees


Trees can provide income to families, who grow them on their land. Additionally the right tree species are more resistant to the climate shifts and extreme weather than traditional crops. In some African countries trees were forgotten, because they are not traditionally part of European agriculture - a model which was imposed on local farmers. It’s as simple as that - in your next workcamp plant more trees! “How to boost rural incomes in Africa? Plant more trees” (Thomson Reuters Foundation).



Co-Funded by the Erasmus plus programme of the European Union.


The Association of Service Civil International ivzw receives support from the European Youth Foundation of the Council of Europe.



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