Journey for Justice Event Promo

May 23rd at 5:00pm CDT - May 23rd at 7:00pm CDT

Journey for Justice: A Global Movement to Empower Emerging Farmers

Join us for a free, in-person documentary film screening followed by a panel discussion on May 23, sponsored by the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy and the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey School of Public Affairs.

Date & Time

Thursday, May 23, 2024

5-7 p.m. CDT


Cowles Auditorium, Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota

301 19th Avenue South

Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455

(Parking and transit instructions below)


Register for the in-person event.

Event Description

Join the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy and the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey School of Public Affairs for a film screening of “Lupang Hinirang,” a documentary chronicling the inspiring journey of Filipino farmers fighting for their land rights against powerful landowners, in the context of agrarian reform in the Philippines, introduced by the filmmaker, Ditsi Carolino. 

Following the screening, a thought-provoking panel discussion will focus on the film’s takeaways for building social movements and empowering small-scale, emerging and BIPOC farmers in Minnesota. Discussion will center on the global challenges facing emerging farmers and why we should care. Hear firsthand accounts of young immigrant farmers, women farmers and farmers facing barriers to land access and how they navigate the challenges of extreme climate, market monopolization by agribusiness, land consolidation, farm commodification and water shortage. 

Learn more about the film and panelists: 

The film: Lupang Hinarang

“Lupang Hinarang,” translated as “blocked land,” is a play on words sounding similar to the name of the Philippine National Anthem, “Lupang Hinirang.” This documentary film captures the two-month walk made by Indigenous Filipino farmers from their mountain village of Sumilao Bukidnon to the presidential palace in Manila. The 2007 march was a peaceful fight for farmers’ land against powerful corporate and the prevailing government policy favoring land conversion. Through the walk, public opinion and social movement were shaped to pressure the government to overturn a Supreme Court decision and pass a renewed agrarian reform law that protects the landless farmers’ rights to their farm.

The panelists

Aison Garcia is a 2023-2024 Hubert Humphrey Fellow at the University of Minnesota. He is a developmental lawyer in the Philippines. He teaches human rights, agrarian reform, and social justice. He holds a J.D. from the University of the Philippines and a master’s in law from the Queen Mary University of London on a Chevening scholarship. He was a former consultant at the Office of the Vice President on Rural Development and the Agrarian Reform Department of the Philippines. In his 18 years as a lawyer, Aison worked on cases and programs promoting the rights of farmers, fisherfolk, and indigenous peoples. He also founded social enterprises marketing farmers’ produce and renewable energy. Through the Humphrey Fellowship, Aison seeks to sharpen his expertise in social entrepreneurship, and deepen his non-profit leadership and management skills. He aims to expand the political rights of marginalized groups and strengthen their economic empowerment. 

Aison Garcia headshot

Levi Welbourn, a Chicago native, is a passionate Afro-Latino farmer that weaves together his experience as a community organizer, educator, activist, policy advocate and more, to build community and collaborate towards equitable and sustainable agriculture systems. Levi began his academic career studying Public Health in Duluth, Minnesota and received his B.A. in Marketing and Interactive Media Studies from North Central College. Levi’s experience has led him to work in several industries, prioritizing advocacy for BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, and disabled communities. Now, Levi calls Minnesota his home where he continues his advocacy work through the lens of agriculture. Levi works to address disparities and dismantle social and economic barriers minority emerging farmers face. Outside of work, Levi spends time with farmers across Minnesota providing support for farming families, storytelling and sharing, lending a hand with farmwork, and sharing meals with his community. Levi is a plantain lover and is always willing to talk about food. He gardens, loves to cook for friends, writes music, and can usually be found with a book in his hand.

Levi Welbourn headshot

Naima Dhore is a first-generation farmer, activist and educator committed to look after mother earth and community building. She is the executive director of the Somali American Farmers Association, where she supports the next Somali American farmers. Naima is passionate about organic farming and inspiring young people to become future farmers, specifically people from immigrant communities in Minnesota. As director, Naima’s vision comes from the lack of access disadvantaged communities have to Farmers’ Market. This hinders their ability to buy fresh fruits and vegetables. By addressing this disparity, Naima is able to help those facing food insecurity while continuing to educate immigrant communities providing nutrition workshops at public forums about sustainable agricultural practices, organic farming techniques, and spreading awareness on healthy eating habits as well as the environmental, health impact in the community across the state of Minnesota.

Naima Dhore headshot

Moderator: Erin McKee VanSlooten is director of the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy's Community Food Systems Program with the long-term goal of building vibrant food systems that give all people access to sufficient, safe, culturally appropriate and nutritious food while also developing local food supply chains that allow small- to mid-scale farmers access to a variety of new markets. She envisions decentralized, local food systems that are accountable to, and largely controlled by, the community members who depend on them, where food is produced and distributed in a manner that builds equity, justice, and resiliency in policy and practice. Her current projects focus on Farm to School and Farm to Early Care, getting fresh healthy produce from our local growers into school and early care meals, as well as testing and promoting curricula and educational models that encourage food literacy as children make the connection between those locally grown foods and the farmers who produce them. She also works with a broad coalition of stakeholders to push forward state-level policy to support food systems that nourish the community throughout Minnesota. Erin especially enjoys working in solidarity with partners to strengthen community food systems both locally and nationally.  Erin holds a bachelor's degree in philosophy, English literature and Asian studies from St. Olaf College and is currently enrolled in the Master of Public Affairs Program at the Humphrey Institute for Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota. 

Erin McKee headshot

Ditsi Carolino is the filmmaker that created "Lupang Hinirang." Ditsi will be introducing the film at our event. Learn more about the filmmaker here

Ditsi Carolino headshot

Parking and Transit Information 

The Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs is conveniently located on the West Bank of the University of Minnesota's Minneapolis campus. The Humphrey School is bordered by 19th Avenue South and Washington Avenue. The Carlson School of Management is adjacent to the Humphrey School. 


The Humphrey School is easily accessed by Metro Transit bus and light rail service. The West Bank station on the Green Line is closest to the School and located on 19th Avenue; after exiting to street level, proceed south to the School. The Cedar Riverside station on the Blue Line is only a few blocks away from the School. Both bus routes 2 and 7 serve the stop at 19th Avenue South and Riverside Avenue, approximately one block from the Humphrey School. Visit the Metro Transit website to find other routes that serve the area.


A circular drive in front of the building is available for drop off and unloading. The 19th Avenue Ramp is just across the street from the Humphrey School. The 21st Avenue Ramp is just south of the adjacent Carlson School of Management. Information on ramps and parking facilities and more is available from University Parking and Transportation Services.

Driving Directions

Northbound on I-35W:

Continue on I-35W past downtown Minneapolis. Stay to the right and take the exit for “3rd St U of M” (Exit 17C). Continue in the middle lane and exit at “U of M West Bank.” Turn right at the traffic signal at the end of the off ramp on to Washington Avenue S. The road will curve right and become Cedar Avenue. Turn left at 3rd Street. The Humphrey School will be directly in front of you.

Southbound on I-35W:

Exit at University Avenue/4th Street (Exit 18). Turn left at the second traffic signal onto University Avenue. Then turn right on 10th Avenue and continue across the 10th Avenue Bridge. On the south side of the bridge, the road becomes 19th Avenue. The Humphrey School will be on your left.

Eastbound on I-94:

Exit at 25th Avenue (Exit 235A). Turn left on 25th Avenue and then left again on Riverside Avenue. Proceed several blocks to 19th Avenue. The Humphrey School will be one bock down on your right.

Westbound on I-94:

Exit at Riverside Avenue (Exit 235A). Turn right and follow Riverside Avenue for a few blocks to 19th Avenue. Turn right; the Humphrey School is one block down on your right.

Register here for the film screening and panel discussion.