The partnership builds on the existing community resilience and need for justice in the South End of Albany. Amidst ongoing challenges of systemic racism, inequality, climate change and the ongoing pandemic, the aim is to increase local food security and mutual support networks.
Teams apply a social justice analysis to urban ecology and, using a sociological framework, explore the emergent concept of “urban ecosystem justice.” They examine the material needs of city residents and possible ways to regenerate urban socio- ecological health through their research. The team also assists the Radix EcoJustice summer youth employment program. Using the youth participatory action research (YPAR) method, fellows engage youth in documenting ecological conditions in the South End, culminating in the creation and presentation of visual, recorded and written information to benefit the local community and create positive social change.
Summer 2021 Accomplishments:
- Organized applied activities including urban gardening, composting, food distribution, beekeeping, agroforestry management, construction, and street tree planting
- Conducted community-based research, sociological field note-taking, youth engagement and education, and group reading and discussion
- Held an open-house event where the public was invited into the Radix space to learn about the activities and accomplishments of the group.
- Host weekly open houses that draw upon visitors to the weekly South End Night Market
- Continue the community-based interviews related to the Innovation Blocks Program as well as the Pandemic Resilience and EcoSystem Justice Project
- Advance the IRB-approved data collection involving Participatory Action Research (PAR), conduct data analysis and final write-up for eventual publication