Organizing the Hungry – Pastor Heber Brown III

Houses of faith are becoming powerful agents and actors of improving food security in their own community in ways that go beyond charity. It is organizing the hungry and not just feeding the needy.The largest institution in the Black community, the Black church, replete with offerings to fill multiple needs., from the physical grounds, to classrooms, kitchens, to church vans and buses, to the land, and the people. Pastor Heber Brown III,  launched the Black Church Food Security Network (BCFSN) in 2014 with a garden at his own church, Pleasant Hope Baptist Church in Baltimore,  now they have 250 in the network. BCFN was founded  after he noticed a pattern of hospitalizations related to diet and other issues and was determined to change health outcomes for his congregation. What began with encouraging churches to start gardens on church premises, has since grown to include encouraging congregations to make institutional purchases from Black farmers, host farmers markets, preferably on Sundays after church, and arrange tours of Black farms.