In all of our work, Greenaction educates, supports and empowers communities so they have the knowledge, skills and confidence to protect themselves and to be part of the broader movement for health and environmental justice. Communities lead the way and we work to support them in gaining the skills needed to protect health and achieve environmental justice.
Environmental Justice Leadership Academies
Our Leadership Academies are designed to capacitate our participants, particularly our youth, to take action and continue on-going work in their community beyond the academy. We held discussions to find ways to design this years academy to have a greater reach beyond the students and hopefully lay the grounds down to growing our work into a youth-led campaign to address pesticide drift, one of the most pressing environmental injustice issues in Gonzales. Pictured here are our students on their trip to UC Santa Cruz where they spent the day learning about alternative solutions to the environmental injustices that are present in farmworker communities.
Salinas Valley Environmental Justice Youth Leadership Academy
Since 2015 Greenaction has held month-long Environmental Justice Youth Leadership Academy with 10 youth from the Salinas Valley in Gonzales, California. The goal of this Academy has been to support youth in becoming competent youth leaders and organizers in their community.
Kettleman City Youth Protecting Our Planet (YPOP) Leadership Academy
In 2005 Greenaction supported youth from Kettleman City to organize themselves to take action to address multiple environmental injustice issues in their community. Youth took the lead to organize the residents in Kettleman City to address the birth defect clusters that were discovered in Kettleman City. Since 2005 YPOP remains active in their community and watchdogs Chemical Waste Management and actively addresses issues of diesel pollution, pesticide drift and food and water insecurity.
White Mesa Environmental Justice Leadership Academy
Since 2016 Greenaction has worked with the White Mesa Ute Mountain Ute community members to support them in learning how to write press releases, become better public speakers, organize and mobilize themselves and their community for health and environmental justice against the last uranium mill in the United States.
Food Justice Projects
We know that the communities that are most impacted by environmental injustice also are impacted by food injustice. Our frontline communities are often low-income neighborhoods that are filled with liquor stores, fast-food restaurants and have very little to no access to healthy, organic and affordable foods. Greenaction works for environmental justice by supporting communities in their efforts to fight for their health by growing their own foods.
Kettleman City Community Garden
Our Kettleman City organizers have been working with local residents, farmers and businesses to address food insecurity in their community and are taking initiative to start their own community garden. In 2018 the youth group YPOP along with local residents secured a modest piece of land to grow culturally relevant and organic food! Residents await the arrival of clean running water and hope to begin this garden in June of 2019.
Community-Based Pesticide Drift Reporting
California is the state that uses the most pesticides in the entire nation. Children in agricultural communities are the most at risk. The largest demographic of farmworkers in California are latino/migrant communities that are predominantly Spanish speaking. Many pesticides used in California are among the most hazardous known to cause acute poisoning, cancer, birth defects, sterility, neurotoxicity, damage to the developing child and young children. Through our leadership academies, Greenaction works with youth in the Salinas Valley to lead the pesticide drift work in the Salinas Valley and ensure that communities are given the tools, knowledge and support to file pesticide drift reports.