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Seeding Dominican Food Sovereignity

Inspired by Slow Food DC Share a Seed and endless conversations with Ysanet Batista and Dr. Saudi Garcia about what is my role as a diasporic Dominican to cultivate food sovereignty in my homeland of the Dominican Republic. I started a project sending seed packages to the Dominican Republic in 2022.


The pandemic and now economic recession are making clear the kind of inputs and resources needed to seed food sovereignty in my island nation that are not always available for the growers and their communities. Thanks to an annual generous donation from URI Cooperative Extension Free Seed Program  I had been able to send over 20,000 seed packages to the Dominican Republic. I recognize that as a perfect model of food sovereignty, importing foreign seeds with a dependence of western and diaspora resources might be an assault on local foodways and create unhealthy viability concerns. But when I asked my Dominican community what they needed and what I could do to advance food sovereignty they all identified this as a gap I could fill. 


In 2023 we distributed 10,000 hortalizas (vegetables) seed packages to the following:

Asociación Dominicana de Investigadores de Tecnologías Agrícolas
Ministerio de Agricultura Oficina de Moca Provincia Espaillat, my hometown's office of agricultural and extension education

Superate,  a network of 45 women lead rural cooperatives

Cabarete Sostenible

Santiago Botanical Gardens

Casa Dominicana, a network of Dominican farmers

In 2024 we are seeking to fundraised $500 US dollars to send again 10,000 seed packages to returning and new collaborators in the Dominican Republic. 

Please donate via:


Venmo: Vanessa-GarciaPolanco


Receipts of donations and payments will be posted here. Deadline to Donate is April 30th!

If you want to donate agricultural resources and/or support Dominican Food Sovereignty Initiatives please get in touch at

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