Urban Community Food Project 2015 Expansion
For two years, we’ve been growing food in our vacant lot in the Bronx in order to make an impact on food insecurity and related health issues as well as the root causes of poverty and disenfranchisement. We plant, harvest and distribute our crops with a team of local student interns through partnerships with schools and youth groups- providing participants with valuable experience and arming them with knowledge and skills that will positively effect their futures- helping them to stay in school and on a track of productivity. We also offer public hours, when residents can utilize our outdoor fitness equipment and help out on the farm.
This summer, we are expanding in order to increase our program’s sustainability and impact on our community. From our beginning, we aimed to create employment for local resident to combat the unemployment rates that effect food security and disenfranchisement. By expanding our staff, we’ll be able to offer produce at local farmer’s markets and offer more workshops and internships while beginning cultivation at new sites in order to grow more food and feed more people.
Our program is a long term project. We are building a local food system, maintained and managed by the residents of our community and recipients of the food we grow.
This summer, and into the fall we will work with our staff to offer produce at farmer’s market’s in the Bronx two days a week, while continuing to distribute free food during our weekend open hours at the farm. We will be growing Pea Shoots, Chards, Beets, Cucumbers, Squash and Kale and will continue doing so thanks to our greenhouses and satellite site in Dutchess County, throughout the winter.
We’ll also train 25 youth activists in CPR- and they’ll distribute food access packets throughout the community. Additionally, we will sponsor one individual to become a Certified Personal Trainer and with them offer more fitness classes and workshops on site for years to come.
why we’re doing it
The Bronx is riddled with Hunger- and at the same time Obesity, Diabetes and Heart Disease. All of these issues connect- and the root cause is poverty. Other symptoms of poverty include high rates of homelessness, unemployment, incarceration and school drop out rates. All of these are also prevalent in our neighborhood. This program is our solution- our contribution- to correcting these problems. By working with residents and local groups to create educational programming that results in the production of food and organizing community events and health related workshops we are working to combat all of these issues. We are creating vocational and educational opportunity while increasing local access to healthy produce.