In 2002, Slow Food Sonoma County North nominated AMIDI (Association of Indigenous Women for Holistic Development), a group of 40 Guatemalan Mayan women, for the International Slow Food Award in Turin, Italy. AMIDI won first place for their operation of raising hens for eggs to sell at market. Since then, AMIDI and our convivium have developed an ongoing relationship of mutual education and support based on agricultural traditions, food preparation, cultural values around food, and Slow Food concepts. We have established a scholarship program for both children and adults; raised funds for safe, ventilated, fuel-efficient wood burning stoves for each AMIDI member; created a market for their traditional, handmade table weavings. Our convivium has brought their leader to Sonoma County for educational visits that inspired her to teach AMIDI women to create raised beds for vegetables and farm organically; keep bees; adapt agriculturally to climate change; protect the soils from erosion through reforestation; grow, dry, and sell traditional Mayan herbs that are medicinal; and learn to improve coffee cultivation techniques.
Project leader: Marilee Wingert