Fermenting Change: Connecting Los Angeles through food and faith

submission by Netiya-Grows

About Your Application

Organization(s) name(s):


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Describe Your Organization(s)

Non-profit organization

For-profit organization


Other (please specify below):

In one sentence, please describe what your organization does.


Netiya is a food justice and interfaith network that fosters self-reliance and land stewardship to lead Angelenos of all faiths toward greater access to food worthy of a blessing.

In one to three sentences, please describe your proposal.


The Fermenting Change Event Series will bring together people from diverse communities over our shared values of nourishing food and land stewardship. Our program will engage Jewish and Muslim school communities and grow to become a replicable model for interfaith celebration across the region. By building connections around food, justice, and traditional ties to the earth, we build relationships across religious and cultural barriers to create an interconnected and resilient Los Angeles.

Where will you be working? Please be specific (e.g. Third Street Middle School; Boyle Heights; LA County).

Central LA

East LA

San Gabriel Valley

San Fernando Valley

South LA


South Bay

Antelope Valley

County of Los Angeles (countywide)

City of Los Angeles (citywide)


Other (please specify below):

How do you plan to use these resources to make change? (check all that apply)

Conduct research

Engage residents and stakeholders

Implement a pilot or new project

Expand a pilot or program

Mobilize for systems change

Advocate with policymakers and leaders

Implement and track policy

Other (please specify below):

How will your proposal improve the following “Connect” metrics? (check all that apply)

Rates of volunteerism

Voting rates by race

Adults getting sufficient social & emotional support

Median travel time to work

Attendance at cultural events

Number of public transit riders

Participation in neighborhood councils

Percentage of Angelenos that volunteer informally (Dream Metric)

Government responsiveness to residents’ needs (Dream Metric)

Transit-accessible housing and employment (the share of housing units and percentage of jobs that are located near transit)

Total number of local social media friends and connections (Dream Metric)

Attendance at public/open streets gatherings (Dream Metric)

Residential segregation (Dream Metric)

Access to free wifi (Dream Metric)

Describe in greater detail how you will make LA the best place to connect.


One of the obstacles to civic engagement and a unified community is cultural divides: we are a diverse city where people of different backgrounds live side by side, yet in isolation. At Netiya, we believe there is unity in diversity and that beneath our differences lie commonalities. As an interfaith organization, we bring together different groups under a shared agenda: food and stewardship of the land--topics that are common to all faiths and cultures.

We propose an event series--Fermenting Change--with the goal of creating cross-cultural understanding and engagement around the critical issues of food justice and land stewardship. To enhance the impact of our events, we will also host eight workshops and/or volunteer events throughout the year.

To pilot Fermenting Change, we will create a Jewish-Muslim partnership, bringing together communities in a celebration of common food traditions, ties to agrarian roots, and commitments to social action. We’ll implement the pilot with Sinai Akiba Academy (a Jewish school) and New Horizon School (a Muslim school), both members of Netiya’s interfaith network that will be implementing Netiya’s Just Food & Gardens program at the end of 2015 and beginning of 2016 respectively. As part of those programs, both schools are creating edible gardens on their properties, and hosting educational workshops on topics ranging from gardening and pest management to water-wise technology, traditional cooking preservation, and food justice. More details on our Just Food & Gardens program can be found here: http://www.netiya.org/programs/

Next, we will use lessons learned from the pilot to go beyond a Jewish-Muslim partnership to draw in communities of all faiths. We will host a second event using our 42-member network of faith institutions to create a truly universal and interfaith gathering. The event will be both educational--providing classes and workshops--and inspirational, giving participants the tools and connections to participate in volunteer opportunities, advocate for relevant policy changes, and become ambassadors for food justice in their own communities.

We see the Fermenting Change series both as a community connection in itself, and also as a means to inspire action and interaction outside of the events. Our events will galvanize participants around social change and food issues, resulting in more city-wide participation in volunteer and cultural events both within and outside of the congregation community.

Please explain how you will evaluate your work.


We will evaluate our impact on civic and social engagement, with the goal that our programs will enhance people’s participation both within their own communities (geographic, cultural, or religious) and their interaction and cooperation with other communities.

Specifically we will look at:
--overall participation in two major festival events of 2016, one focused on communities of Sinai Akiba Academy and New Horizon School together and one for the general public
--participation by Fermenting Change attendees at Netiya workshops and volunteer events, as measured by attendance records
--participation by Fermenting Change attendees at other volunteer and cultural events, as measured through participant surveys
--attitudes and interest around social action and inter-faith collaboration, as measured by surveys with participants, newsletter readership

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed? (check all that apply)

Money (financial capital)

Volunteers/staff (human capital)

Publicity/awareness (social capital)

Infrastructure (building/space/vehicles, etc.)


Technical infrastructure (computers, etc.)

Community outreach

Network/relationship support

Quality improvement research

Other (please specify below):

3 Pink talk bubble tail c96b4a07ef1417e25d0bcf5c4cba4766b8bbf0382f07677990a9d5577885d4d7

I've worked with Netiya for years, and their commitment to changing LA's sustainability is unmatched. They are an excellent partner to churches and synagogues in our community.

by Dianekkabat
5 months ago

After Netiya installs gardens and orchards on congregational lands all over LA, then we pull the communities together (congregants, or students/families) for cooking, fermenting, planting and composting workshops to connect around food/faith. Last month we planted an urban orchard at Sinai Temple, and our next planting day is at the New Horizon Muslim School on Nov. 15th. This project will enable us to bring students and their families to CONNECT with students and families in other schools that have installed kitchen gardens through workshops on our shared agrarian roots. It's all about connecting on common ground.

by devbee
6 months ago

Netiya is doing such wonderful work building bridges to connect all faiths through stewardship!

by TRP
6 months ago

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Award topvotedidea 5a5ae14e3d56a10363ea2a398cece46cf4df891213cbe68677c19d8903a1932a
Circle 1 inactive e7784182a1bd5eace578987db27fc19ec6337f418c48c6c8732605b9043d50d0 Step1 title submission inactive cde083e53089b973e7c9dc80a44a038c1ce4cf3b2650aeb5549157d1ed58a2d9

Submission Began
Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Submission Ended
Tuesday, October 06, 2015
at 07:00 PM UTC

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Voting Began
Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Voting Ended
Tuesday, November 03, 2015
at 08:00 PM UTC

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Winner Announced
Tuesday, December 08, 2015