Why the Skyway Community?
Skyway is the heart and soul of Seattle-King County. We are proudly diverse. Our community is strong and growing despite being ignored and overlooked by government and private investment for decades. We are home to people of all incomes, and we are resisting the pressures of gentrification and displacement. We are here to stay. By centering a just and equitable Food System in Skyway, we honor and center the voices of BIPOC communities that have been ignored for too long.
We use the name "Skyway" to refer to the entire neighborhood sometimes called "Skyway - West Hill."
Skyway is home to the largest African-American stronghold in the state of Washington, and the Urban Food Systems Pact celebrates and centers Black leadership in the re-imagining of our Urban Food System.
Play this video to hear more about who we are and what we do for the Skyway Community.
Who We Are
The Urban Food Systems Pact (UFSP) is a Black- and women-led collective of Community Members, Faith-Based Leaders, Black and Brown Farmers, Community Based Organizations and the Renton School District that is hosted by the Skyway Envision Center.
Our Collective Impact Aims
We are embarking on a Collective Impact model to guide our work. Members of the UFSP Partnership are working together to identify and commit to a Common Agenda, Shared Measurement, Mutually Reinforcing Activities, and Continuous Communication. The Urban Food Systems Pact core team serves as the "Backbone Organization" for our Collective Impact model.
What We Do
We are working in partnership to build a just and equitable local food system within the Skyway Community. Our work aims to dismantle the inequities and structural racism that exist in the broader food system from the farm to the dinner table.
We are visioning and creating a new set of relationships around food and agriculture with justice at the center. The current food system in Skyway denies residents access to healthy foods and to meaningful, well-paying jobs in the food and agricultural sector. We are developing a Food Justice Community Action Plan. This plan will lay the groundwork for a new Urban Food System that supports the physical, emotional and spiritual health, economic opportunity, and creativity of all Skyway residents.
With these objectives in mind, our current and upcoming activities include:
Food Justice Education, Workshops & Action Planning
Food Justice Advocacy
Career Pathways in Urban Agriculture Programs
Grounds for Peace (Urban Gardening Programs)
Commitment (Our Guiding Principles)
These are our "draft" guiding principles, based on initial community input. We are continuing to refine these with additional input from UFSP partners.
Treat everyone with dignity and respect
Reliable, sustained commitment to Skyway
Center Black voices and leadership
Foster belonging across Skyway’s diverse community
Support and prioritize community-leadership and community-based organizations
Take a holistic approach to health and well-being
Meet The UFSP Core Team
Renton School District
(Family and Community Engagement Coordinator, Renton School District) has over thirty years experience supporting youth and families, within the behavioral health, social and human services, and family and community engagement fields. She excels at building partnerships amongst government, for profit and nonprofit entities, driven by a deep appreciation for how effective partnerships can improve the quality of life for the most vulnerable amongst us. Cherryl is an Alumni of the University of Tulsa holding a B.A. in Psychology and Sociology as well as the New College of California where she has a M.A. in Counseling Psychology.
The Dare2Be Project
Jamie Jackson (Executive Director, The Dare2Be Project) is a servant leader, and passionate about social justice issues, with Food Justice being premier. She is an Alumni of the University of Eastern Washington holding a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies with a concentration in Social Science. As a UFSP Core Team member, her focus is on leveraging The Dare2Be Project’s workforce programs to build agricultural trade related pathways for Skyway Community Members.
New Birth Center for Community Inclusion
Kimberly Sopher-Dunn is the Director of Education & Community Capacity Building with New Birth Center for Community Inclusion, the co-Pastor at New Birth Ministries (with her husband, Pastor Scipio Dunn), and the founder of The Petah Villages, a newly formed Outdoor Preschool in Skyway. She is a social-justice preacher, singer/songwriter, community-based educator and author, with a Doctorate in Education in Transformative Education from Simon Fraser University. Her goal is to realize a Sustainable Ecosystem for the Skyway Community, and her deepest desire is to magnify the voices of those impacted by the lack of nutritional self-healing foods and environmentally safe spaces.
La Tanya V.H. DuBois
The Silent Task Force
La Tanya Horce-Dubuis is the founder of The Silent Task Force and has been in the trenches of Human Service work for over 20 years. She managed, coordinated and created programming for black and brown communities of King County and engaged with communities and youth, providing training and workshops to meet them where they were and provide resources and services in a safe, holistic space in the process. Her passion for food justice runs deep, she feels that it is a human right to have access to fresh fruits and vegetables and makes herself available every week to personally transport 200 – 300 produce boxes from the Frog Farm to the weekly Skyway Food Pantry and bi-weekly Skyway Resource Pop-up food distributions.
Renton Innovation Zone Partnership
Ryan is the Executive Director of the Renton Innovation Zone Partnership, a non-profit convening over 30 organizations to improve academic outcomes for students and families through a racial equity lens in Skyway and Renton Highlands. He is completing his Master's degree in Communication Leadership at the University of Washington, with a focus on Communities and Networks. Ryan’s personal mission is to empower Communities of Color, change systems and increase generational wealth for Black and Brown people.
UFSP Community Leadership Team
of God Church
Institutional & Governmental Partners