The nonprofit organization World Central Kitchen, which uses the power of food to nourish communities and strengthen economies in times of crisis and beyond, has announced a panel discussion, “Creating Resilient Food Systems in the Caribbean,” to be held at 3 p.m., Monday, July 19. This virtual event, convened by WCK, will be free to attend and will feature leaders in the industry and region, including Michael Pintard, minister of agriculture and maritime resources in The Bahamas; Positive Nelson, commissioner of agriculture of the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Ramón “Pirul” González, secretary of agriculture in Puerto Rico.
It will be moderated by Uriyoán Colón-Ramos, associate professor at George Washington University and a public health nutrition investigator with expertise working in Latin America and the Caribbean. The panel will be hosted online in English with simultaneous translation in Spanish.
Through its Food Producer Network, WCK partners with and supports smallholder farmers, fishers and small food-related businesses that produce or distribute food at a local level by providing funding, training and networking opportunities. The Food Producer Network was established in Puerto Rico in 2018 in response to the 2017 hurricanes that devastated the island and has since awarded over $3.4 million in grants to food producers affected by natural disasters in the Caribbean and Latin America.
In 2020, the program expanded its efforts in the USVI, The Bahamas and Guatemala, and it continues working to support food security throughout the region.
The “Creating Resilient Food Systems” panel brings together key leaders in Puerto Rico, The Bahamas, and the USVI to discuss preparedness ahead of this year’s hurricane season. They will discuss how regional governments and organizations can work together to respond to a crisis and facilitate the recovery process.
“For the last four years, we have been supporting food producers across the region and have connected with each of the panelists in unique ways. In our conversations, we learned there is a great opportunity to learn and cooperate amongst the Caribbean islands,” said Mikol Hoffman, director of WCK’s Food Producer Network. “Community is at the heart of everything we do, and we wanted to convene some of our incredible partners to exchange ideas and create a space for collaboration.”
To register for “Creating Resilient Food Systems in the Caribbean,” use this link: http://wck.org/resilience-panel. This event is open to the public and will include an opportunity to ask questions.