Question: What is the first ingredient in the recipe for achieving real and lasting change?


Answer: Education.  But not just any education, Education for Action!

Farmworkers in Immokalee have made the call – and the Fair Food Nation is answering!  41 new Sustainers have joined the ranks this week – help us get 10 more today!

The Fair Food Program is more than just a certification program, it’s a culture change program that is fundamentally transforming what an agricultural workplace can be.  So before the Fair Food Standards Council’s human rights monitors head into the fields with notebooks in hand, before workers pick up their phone to report a complaint, before the “Fair Food Bonus” shows up on workers’ weekly checks, there is the worker-to-worker education that makes everything else possible.

When the CIW’s farmworker-led education team first stepped foot on a Fair Food Program farm in 2011, we knew a dry lecture on workers’ rights under the Fair Food Code of Conduct wouldn’t do.  Instead, we developed a visually-rich, accessible, multi-lingual, interactive education program that is delivered at multiple points throughout any farmworker’s tenure on an FFP farm.  Education starts at the point of hire, as workers both receive a booklet and view a video (both produced by the CIW) their very first day on the job.  The process is then reinforced by on-the-farm education by fellow farmworkers early each season, where the CIW Education Team can take the time to ensure that workers fully understand their rights, because the FFP’s on-farm education sessions are held on-the-clock and paid as time worked.  The FFP’s wall-to-wall education program is designed to ensure workers under the program’s protections not only know their rights, but are equipped to serve as the front-line monitors of their own rights — a key element in the groundbreaking Worker-driven Social Responsibility model — by reporting violations to the 24/complaint line and working in partnership with the FFSC’s auditing team. 

And perhaps most importantly, the FFP’s worker-to-worker education program never stops to rest on its laurels.  This year we celebrated, and then blew through, an important milestone: Our 1000th worker-to-worker education session.  Additionally, more than 300,000 “Know Your Rights” education booklets have been distributed since we started!

As a Fair Food Sustainer, you can join the CIW’s tireless Education Team in breaking new ground with the next 1,000 education sessions in the decade ahead!  Click here to sign up to become one of today’s 10 new Sustainers.

Our longstanding motto at the CIW — the recipe for our unique success since we started organizing in the early 1990s — is simple: “Consciousness + Commitment = Change.”  Creative, interactive education techniques are essential for the first ingredient to take shape. To deliver on that need, our vans travel tens of thousands of miles each year to reach workers in America’s most remote fields; our education team spends weeks on the road, conducting back-to-back sessions in the early hours of the day before the sun rises in the sky and workers head into the fields; and we constantly adapt and update our videos, booklets, and other materials to reflect the ever-changing reality of the expanding Fair Food Program. But as we step back this week and reflect on the past ten years — and dream about the future of Fair Food in the decade to come, as we work to expand into new states and crops — we know that achieving our vision still requires one important partner: You.

This week, help us build a foundation for the next 10 years of Fair Food by becoming a Fair Food Sustainer!  You can sign up here.