Support SF BayView
Donate or Subscribe to SF Bay View
Follow Us Twitter Facebook

The Green Movement comes to inner-city West Oakland

November 21, 2009

by Minister of Information JR

Feyu Diallo, son of Village Bottoms Farm owner Marcel Diallo, helps out on the farm regularly. When it is completed, this farm is planning to employ a large number of people from the surrounding community.
Feyu Diallo, son of Village Bottoms Farm owner Marcel Diallo, helps out on the farm regularly. When it is completed, this farm is planning to employ a large number of people from the surrounding community.
With the economic depression setting in and the effects of global warming being seen all over the planet, people are having to find ways to employ themselves as well as create cost effective healthy, earth friendly alternatives to expensive fast food and cheap GMO (genetically modified organism) products.

Marcel Diallo, a longtime Oakland community activist and cultural worker turned real estate tycoon, thinks that he has one of the answers, the Village Bottoms Farm in West Oakland. Earlier this year, the short-lived appointment of Van Jones of the Oakland-based Ella Baker Center by the Obama administration to be the “environmental czar” brought the spotlight of the environmental movement to Oakland.

West Oakland, maligned as a crime-ridden inner-city neighborhood, was the first stop in Oakland for most Black families who moved to the Bay Area chasing World War II jobs. This report veers off the beaten path, examining not the typical environmental non-profit that comes in from the outside purportedly to help the community, but a home-grown organization helping a community, not one that it has socially, politically and financially invaded, but one that it has grown with over a decade. The Village Bottoms Farm is “for us, by us.”

This is an insider’s look, from within the Black community, at a massive project that will employ people as well as make a community without a supermarket healthier, with the fish and produce that they will produce right there in West Oakland where it is sold.

By looking at how this plan sits with the City of Oakland’s 10-year plan for the particular area of West Oakland where the farm is located, I want to change the way many of the consumers of these reports look at people from this low income, impoverished, crime-ridden neighborhood, by opening up avenues for people inside and outside of this community to work together to make this exciting “green” project a success.

Marcel Diallo's Village Bottoms Farm is reconnecting the people with the land, enabling them to thrive by growing their own food to feed their families.
Marcel Diallo's Village Bottoms Farm is reconnecting the people with the land, enabling them to thrive by growing their own food to feed their families.
How will Marcel’s vision, which is inspired by the work of MacArthur Genius Award winner Will Allen, work? Who will it employ? What does it take to accomplish a feat of this magnitude? What has the response of city government been? What has been the response of the surrounding community?

What are some of the obstacles facing the Village Bottoms Farm? And who are some of the people and organizations that are collaborating with the Village Bottoms Farm to make it a reality? Will this farm change the way that Oakland residents see land, food and their ability to grow food?

How is this new “green consciousness” affecting low income crime-ridden neighborhoods like West Oakland? Listen, learn and be inspired by a neighborhood pulling together to determine its own destiny.

Green Movement in West Oakland – by J.R. Vallery by SpotUs

Email POCC Minister of Information JR, Bay View associate editor, at blockreportradio@gmail.com and visit www.blockreportradio.com. This Block Report Radio report was funded through Spot.us, an exciting new way to fund journalism by enabling the public to commission journalists to report on important and perhaps overlooked topics. Kwan Booth served as peer review editor for this report. To learn more, read a background interview with Duane Deterville of the Village Bottoms Cultural District.

3 thoughts on “The Green Movement comes to inner-city West Oakland

  1. Jason

    This article has been posted in a clear effort to create positive press for Marcel Diallo. JR Valrey (AKA Minister of Information JR) is a personal friend of Diallo, and wrote this piece to help his friend. There is no journalistic integrity here what-so-ever.

    Marcel Diallo needs as much good press as he can get right now, because SFGate and the East Bay Express have uncovered scandalous information about him, his finances, and his organization. Read all about it by clicking the links in this post.

    Reply
  2. The Minister of Information

    “Jason” it is very interesting how you and THE NAZI BAY EXPRESS are campaigning against Marcel as if he is the biggest problem in Oakland. Do you write about what’s been happening with the police in Oakland killing members of the Black community? Of course not, Black people alive and well are not on “Jason”, Max’s, or Stephen Buel’s agenda. “Draining the Bay” of its Black population is. To all other readers, google this RACIST WHITE CREW of bloggers along with their allies at THE NAZI BAY EXPRESS. Just to give the readers some insight into who is really behind the NAZI BAY EXPRESS article, here is a video to show you how much of a joke their journalism is. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=52VdW8qFJ6Q. Also WHERE ARE ALL THE BLACK AND LATINO WRITERS WHO WRITE FOR THE NAZI BAY EXPRESS? ANSWER: THEY DON’T EXIST. You know who I am “jason”, why don’t you take your “cyber” hood off, and tell us who you really are?????? History has always showed Clan-types always want to hid their faces…….RACIST COWARDS!!!!!!

    Reply
  3. Ann Garrison

    I just Googled East Bay Express and Marcel Diallo and got this, “You Don’t Know Jack,” http://www.eastbayexpress.com/ebx/you-dont-know-jack/Content?oid=1428761, and it is absolutely awful writing. Doesn’t say a word about what Marcel Diallo’s proposed project was, or, why this Oakland commission rejecting it, kicking off the argument. Nor does it in any way explain what this downright bizarre statement is supposed to mean:

    “As Diallo’s fortunes plummeted, Max Allstadt’s were on the rise. The young white activist had moved to West Oakland several years earlier and hooked up with a group of friends who were challenging the neighborhood’s traditional black and progressive power structure.”

    Bizarre because most people don’t make outright racist statements like that these days, whatever their agenda. Something wrong with this “black and progressive power structure”? If so, what’s the significance of a challenge by a “young white activist”? Writer seems to think his meaning is obvious and obviously right.

    I keep wondering what happened to the East Bay Express.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

BayView Classifieds - ads, opportunities, announcements
San Francisco Comcast
Advertisement