This project will build on the 2017-2018 California PDP project, which is providing a one-time racial equity training workshop for extension professionals. This project will build a community of practice around social and racial justice in agricultural and food systems extension, and provide on-going training and networking opportunities on this topic. A series of webinars with experts and experienced extension professionals, an in-person training coupled with a visit to a farm operated by farmers of color, and an ongoing e-mail group will help extension professionals to continue to work together and support one another in honing the skills needed to foster constructive relationships of trust with farmers and ranchers of color. Successful sustainable agriculture extension that is holistic and context-specific requires close engagement with producers in a way that respects their cultural context and experiential knowledge. By learning how to achieve such mutually constructive relationships, extension professionals in California will help make extension services more widely accessible and responsive to the needs of the growing numbers of producers of color, who have historically been underserved by extension institutions.
Project objectives from proposal:
- Increase knowledge and skills among California extension professionals around building constructive working relationships with producers of color and immigrant producers through a series of educational webinars (2020), one in-person event (2020), and at least one extension-focused peer reviewed publication (throughout 202o).
- Foster the development of a supportive community of practice among California extension professionals who are committed to better engaging traditionally underserved producers in California, including producers of color and immigrant producers, by hosting regular learning and networking opportunities (throughout 2020).
- Document and share lessons learned broadly through at least one extension-focused peer reviewed publication (2021).