The Come to the Table Fellowship


Come to the Table is best known for hosting regional conferences that convene faith leaders and laypeople, hunger relief advocates, farmers, farm-workers, school nutrition directors and others in order to find mutually beneficial solutions for farmers and food insecurity.

In 2015, we launched a new facet of our work: the Come to the Table Fellowship. 

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The Come to the Table Fellowship is for people of faith engaged in farm-based food access initiatives who want to create more innovation and equity in North Carolina’s faith and food movement. While RAFI and our partners will provide a range of experiential and materials-based training, the primary objective is to create a learning community of active projects to increase the effectiveness of our collective work. Together we will deepen our understanding of root causes of hunger, food access and sustainability, and how these dynamics intersect with our faith community.

Goals of the Fellowship 

  • Strengthen ties between food access initiatives and local / regionally produced foods
  • Deepen analysis around the root causes of hunger
  • Share in a peer learning community

Fellows will participate in three overnight retreats over the course of six months, as well as receive technical assistance from RAFI and other participants throughout the duration of the fellowship. Fellows will also have the opportunity to present about their work at the 2017 Come to the Table conference series.


The 2015-2016 Fellowship Program

The program is open to members of faith based food access initiatives located in North Carolina. Examples include congregations or other faith groups who manage a community garden, a sliding scale CSA, a community meal or food pantry that sources from local farms.

In order to create the biggest impact on participating groups, at least two and no more than three members must apply for the fellowship as a team. Members of teams do not necessarily need to attend the same congregation or work for the same organization, but should be engaged in a joint project or ministry.  Teams may include pastors, lay leaders, garden managers, farmers, or others engaged in the project.

Example Fellowship Teams:

  • A member of a church that runs a sliding scale CSA partners with the farmer supplying produce.
  • Two members of a congregation’s hunger committee partner with a community garden manager.
  • A pastor and a farmer are trying to launch a mobile market and apply as a pair.

During the 2015-2016 program, we expect to enroll approximately fifteen individuals representing up to six initiatives.

Cost

RAFI is pleased to offer the Fellowship free of charge to individuals who are invited to participate. Lodging, meals, and technical assistance are all provided at no cost. Participants are responsible to cover travel expenses to and from retreats. If this presents a barrier, please let us know and we will explore options for assistance, although we cannot guarantee funds will be available.


Selection Criteria

  • Duos or trios (2-3 people) representing a faith based food access ministry
  • Demonstrated commitment to creating a more sustainable and equitable food system in North Carolina.
  • Geographic distribution as well as race, gender, and age diversity
  • Strong collaboration, teamwork, and group decision-making skills
  • Capacity to participate in fellowship activities, including: three overnight retreats, technical assistance, and documenting your work via photos and a blog post.

Fellowship Timeline

October 2nd: Application Deadline
Mid October: Notification of Fellows

Dates of Overnight Retreats:
November 19th 5pm – November 20th, 4pm at Camp Chestnut Ridge, Efland, NC
February 25th 5pm – February 26th 4pm. Location TBD.
April 14th 5pm – April 15th 4pm. Location TBD

The success of the fellowship relies on the full and concentrated engagement of all cohort participants. We ask that you make note of the schedule and apply only if you can commit to attend all three overnight retreats.


How to Apply

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Deadline: October 2, 2015

1) Each applicant completes an online form (Note: You will identify in the application which group you are part of and who you are applying with, but each applicant must complete their own application).

2) Applicants who meet selection priorities will be invited to participate in a phone interview with RAFI staff between October 6th and 14th.

3) Applicants who are invited to become Fellows will complete and sign a commitment letter to the Come to the Table Program Director.

Applications will first be reviewed by the Come to the Table Fellowship Project Team. The Project Team will select applicants to interview and choose finalists. The 2015 / 2016 CTTT Fellowship program begins with a weekend retreat and orientation November 19th – 20th.

Questions? Contact Tahz Walker at tahz@rafiusa.org or (919) 548-6825.

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