Emile Street Community Research Garden
The Emile Street Community Research Farm is 2+acre demonstration of urban agriculture in Houston’s Fifth Ward, an underserved community just a few miles from a prosperous downtown. Starting as a community garden in December of 2007, the project has been entirely operated and funded by the founder, Joe Icet along with a core of volunteers of the Last Organic Outpost, a 501c3 organization and its community supporters. Our current location grows from 5,000-10,000 pounds of vegetable each year and provides fresh food for a co-operative market, farm families and nearby residents. Surrounding Emile Street are pocket neighborhoods that house families, elderly, youth, unemployed and mentally disabled. Some of our produce is donated to The BREAD of Life Homeless Project.
To illustrate our ability for productive land stewardship, we would like to create the ‘Garden of Eatin’ by expanding the current farm to an adjacent, blighted lot. This lot will be grown with a no-till method to demonstrate more nutrient dense, cost-effective and less labor intensive food production than traditional gardening results. It would also showcase what could be grown on a typical, small house lot and how it can feed as many 15 families. This abandoned lot is one of the many in this economically challenged area, classified a food desert. By providing the methodology for the gardens to be easily maintained with food grown and distributed cost-effectively, we believe we can train a workforce that goes beyond gardening and instead farms entire neighborhoods.
Through urban farming and farm-based art & education, we teach residents and train community farmers on how to produce safe, healthy and accessible food for all. We envision growing ‘Food Everywhere’ and seeding an Urban Agricultural District that cultivates our region’s food and supports local farmers to thrive despite economic, environmental, health and social challenges.
KGI is a nonprofit community of over 30,000 people who are growing some of our own food and helping others to do the same.
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Kitchen Gardeners International
3 Powderhorn Drive,
Scarborough, ME, 04074, USA