LeadersAlliesResources

***Leaders, Allies & Resources for

Young Farmers of New Mexico***

Do you know more leaders, allies and resources to help inspire, empower and connect New Mexico's young farmers?

Add them to the list! Edit this wiki or contact Ethan Genauer at ethanagri4(at)gmail.com

Native American Community Academy is a charter school in Southeast Albuquerque with a mission that includes integrated curriculum, a cultural and language context, and a wellness philosophy. NACA's Three Sisters garden project (corn, beans and squash) supports the physical health of students by promoting healthy eating and work outdoors, social and community health by making it a group project where each person has a specific job that contributes to the whole, and cultural well-being by teaching traditional Native American agricultural practices. "In my tradition, when we plant we're supposed to nurture the corn and beans the way we would treat our family or a loved one. You go out to the garden and pray to the flowers and talk to the plants," says NACA student Isaiah Gay. www.nacaschool.org

Camino de Paz Farm, located 20 miles north of Santa Fe and adjacent Española in Santa Cruz, is the home of a Montessori middle school for teenagers. "We cultivate approximately five acres of land, using only organic and ecological practices, as well as different water conservation measures for watering our crops. We have two draft horses that help us with our plowing—along with chickens, ducks, and this spring we'll add some sheep and a goat. Our market garden produces year round (passive solar greenhouse systems) for the Santa Fe farmers' market and our CSA (more or less 30 families). The kids at the school integrate farm activities into their curriculum. Our farm is a little community dedicated to the ideas of small-scale farming and local economies." www.caminodepaz.net

La Plazita Institute is a grassroots-based center in Albuquerque that engages young people and their families in a comprehensive, holistic approach toward youth and community development. Designed around the philosophy of la cultura cura, La Plazita's programs engage youth and families in tapping their own roots to express core traditional values of respect, honor, love, family, and community. La Plazita's unique "Tierra a la Boca" program links youth — especially former gang members and those previously incarcerated — to La Placita Gardens at Historic Sanchez Farm, a thriving cooperative farm involving a broad cross-section of the community including university professors, developmentally disabled adults, seed saving organizations and families seeking access to land. The intent of "Tierra a la Boca" is to integrate youth into every aspect of the farming project, from operating big machinery to planting seeds, caring for crops, harvesting, selling produce at local farmers markets, and providing produce for families.

Sembrando Semillas Acequia Youth Program was created by the New Mexico Acequia Association to inspire and facilitate the development of our next generation of parciantes (acequia irrigators) in northern New Mexico. The program is focused primarily on mentorship, in which youth learn about seasonal agricultural activities through hands-on experiential learning. Mentors organize activities for the youth to participate, including preparing the fields, planting, irrigating, harvesting, and traditional food processing activities such as making chicos and having matanzas. The youth document their experiences through digital photography and recorded interviews for the purpose of creating digital storytelling pieces, short video, radio, and print media. Another goal of the project is to build relationships within and among the youth in the program and to strengthen their sense of belonging to the greater acequia community. www.lasacequias.org

Santa Fe Indian School offers coursework in agricultural sciences and Native American agriculture education. This high school program has been working with the Food Sovereignty Assessment tool developed by First Nations Development Institute, collecting stories about their elders and food in their communities. Information includes sources of food, food preparation, food assistance, diet, health, and traditional food and farming traditions. The students receive hands-on growing practice at various pueblos, learning how integral agriculture is to the lives of their communities. As heard from one student at the school: "If we can't plant corn, we can't pray." www.sfis.k12.nm.us

Dragon Farm started as a senior year "service action project" at South Valley Academy. The service learning curriculum at SVA requires all students to go out into the community every Thursday afternoon for three hours. One of head farmer Richard Brandt's advisees wanted to address malnutrition in the South Valley. He decided to start an organic farm to make fresh produce available locally, and to demonstrate how organic farming can improve a community's overall well-being. At the same time, the American Friends Service Committee was seeking to launch a demonstration organic farm project in the South Valley. "It was a natural fit," says Don Bustos, who works for the AFSC building a network of demonstration farms across the state. "We've got a school linked directly with a farm. The rows of corn are almost right outside the classrooms." That one-student project, named for the school's mascot, was initiated in September 2006 and now fills over an acre of the Academy's seven-acre campus. Brandt proudly shows off rows of calabacitas, zucchini, tomatoes, corn, basil, onions, lettuce, okra, bell peppers, chile, arugula, cauliflower, broccoli, garlic, sunflowers, eggplant, strawberries, potatoes, chard, cabbage, peas and turnips.

Rocky Mountain Youth Corps works to revitalize community, preserve and restore the environment, prepare young people for responsible and productive lives, and build civic spirit through service. Based in Taos and modeled after the Civilian Conservation Corps of the 1930's, RMYC provides creative approaches to problems stemming from poverty, youth substance abuse, teen pregnancy, and violence. RMYC targets disadvantaged youth, providing a strategy for young adults to better their communities and their own lives. With this in mind, RMYC not only works to restore watersheds and create community gardens, but also uses these activities as the means to positive youth development. www.youthcorps.org

Rocky Mountain Farmers Union is a progressive, grassroots organization founded in 1907. RMFU represents family farmers and ranchers in Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico. RMFU is dedicated to sustaining our rural communities, to wise stewardship and use of natural resources, and to protection of our safe, secure food supply. RMFU's youth programs include Scholarships, Summer Leadership Camps, Youth Leaders, Youth Completion Awards, Senior Youth Advisory Council, and Food for Thought Contest. See www.rmfu.org/education/

New Mexico Youth Organized (formerly known as the League of Young Voters NM) is a community-based organization that works to identify and foster young leaders to realize and wield their power. NMYO is coordinating the Green Jobs Initiative in Albuquerque, a local effort that is part of the successful national campaign "Green for All." NMYO is interested in facilitating volunteer/work days at local farms for youth and students, and supports the vision of sustainable agriculture as one viable green career path and economic opportunity for youth. Contact Juan Reynosa, moc.liamg|1nawooj#moc.liamg|1nawooj

New Mexico "No Child Left Inside" Coalition is an alliance of more than 50 organizations working to promote the positive benefits of outdoor educational experiences on children's academic achievement. Led by the Sierra Club's "Building Bridges to the Outdoors" program, it seeks to engage public officials to provide funding to help programs that get children outside become sustainable, while providing children who have outdoor experiences with leadership and campaign skills to go back to their community and create positive social change. In 2007, this Coalition celebrated passage of The New Mexico Outdoor Classroom Initiative— the first of its kind in the nation— an effort to increase outdoor education across the state utilizing state parks, federal public lands, ranches, nature centers and other locations. The Initiative will have four components: teacher training institutes and curriculum development, transportation grants, educational materials for students and service learning. See www.sierraclub.org/youth/

Food Not Bombs has New Mexico chapters in Albuquerque, Taos and Santa Fe. FNB cooks and shares free healthy vegetarian meals at public parks in the community, and engages youth with positive social activism. FNB picnic locations in Albuquerque are currently at Robinson Park (8th & Central NW) on Sundays at 1 pm, and outside the UNM Bookstore (Cornell & Central NE) on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 12 noon. Cooking for the UNM Bookstore picnic starts at 9 am at the Peace and Justice Center (Corner of Silver and Harvard NW). To get involved, contact moc.oohay|505_bnf#moc.oohay|505_bnf. See also www.foodnotbombs.net.

Roots & Shoots is a youth program that supports young people involved in service projects that are educational and beneficial to people, animals and the environment. The program was started by Goodall and 16 Tanzanian students in 1990. Roots & Shoots-Four Corners States (Arizona, Utah, Colorado and New Mexico) is the program's newest regional operation. In Albuquerque, Roots & Shoots works closely with student environmental leaders at Albuquerque Academy, where the science facilities include a 400 square-foot greenhouse and a half-acre central courtyard demonstration garden representing New Mexico's diverse native ecosystems. In addition, the Rio Grande Roots & Shoots chapter in Albuquerque is made up of homeschooling families who have come together "with the common goal of empowering our children through inspiration, education and service." www.rootsandshoots.org; www.riogranderootsandshoots.org

New Mexico Farm to School program brings farmers into classrooms to share their lives and the bounty of their harvests, takes kids on field trips to farms and other food-related locations, and facilitates the direct sales of farm fresh produce to school cafeterias for meals and snacks. Contact Le Adams, Co Director of Farm to Table and the Farm to School Program Director, at ofni.elbatotmraf|el#ofni.elbatotmraf|el. See also www.farmtoschool.org/NM/programs.htm

Environmental Education Association of New Mexico (EEANM) is a nonprofit organization which provides, promotes, and enhances quality environmental education by offering New Mexicans opportunities for professional development, communication, and partnership. www.eeanm.org

Traditional Native American Farmers Association is an all-indigenous mutual support network for traditional farmers living and working in Arizona and New Mexico. TNAFA holds traditional organic farming workshops, distributes seeds to member farmers, and educates Native students by planting demonstration gardens at schools. Contact Clayton Brascoupe, moc.oohay|epuocsarbc#moc.oohay|epuocsarbc

PLUS

Urban Farmers group at Duke City Fix – www.dukecityfix.com/group/urbanfarmers

UNM Sustainability Studies Program – www.unm.edu/~sust/index.html

Free for All Fruit Albuquerque (cooperative urban fruit harvesting) – moc.spuorgelgoog|QBAtiurFllAroFeerF#moc.spuorgelgoog|QBAtiurFllAroFeerF

Rio Grande Community Farm – www.riograndefarm.org

Erda Gardens CSA and Learning Center – www.erdagardens.org

New Mexico Forum for Youth in Community – www.nmforumforyouth.org

New Mexico 4-H Youth - www.cahe.nmsu.edu/4h/

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