[Sdpg] Fwd: Seeds at City Kickstarter

Brook Sarson brook at h2o-me.com
Wed Dec 28 13:15:22 PST 2011

Hi Friends,

Many of you already know about Seeds at San Diego City College; many  
of you have been touched and enchanted by this program, as I have.   
Please help our community thrive by doing what you can to keep this  
vibrant resource alive and thriving, whether it's donating money,  
time, materials, or just passing this on to others who can.

Brook Sarson
Smart Water Savings
brook at h2o-me.com

> Downtown on the farm
> It's been a little over 3 1/2 years since Julia, myself and our  
> amazing farm team started our brown revolution (brown compost is the  
> new green) by composting over the almost half acre lawn at City  
> College In Downtown San Diego. Since that time the challenges of  
> urban farming have been teaching us to grow personally as well as  
> vegetatively.
> Growing farmers as well as vegetables
> Something interesting you may not know is that as courses, staff  
> positions and entire programs are being eliminated throughout the  
> public education system, the Seeds at City sustainable agriculture  
> program is growing and yielding (in farming it's all about yields)  
> not only literally tons of organic vegetables and fruits for  
> students, local community and staff, but more importantly nearly one  
> hundred new urban farmers have completed the Seeds at City apprentaship  
> program.
> Additionally, in the last year and a half, hundreds of students have  
> taken our newly accredited courses in sustainable agriculture. A  
> number of other community colleges with waining attendance have  
> inquired to why our program is attracting an over whelming interest  
> from students of all ages. It seems making a difference just might  
> require doing something different.
> Filling a huge niche
> The agriculture program at Seeds at City is surprisingly the first of  
> its kind at an institution of higher learning in San Diego County.  
> Surprising because agriculture is one of our biggest industries. The  
> fact is we lead the nation in small family farms practicing organic  
> methods in our county. When we started Seeds at City internship program  
> one of the first questions we were asked was "where will our  
> graduates get jobs?" We felt strongly that opportunities in this  
> fertile industry exist but they don't necessarily equate to jobs.  
> Our graduates have been putting their "farm sense" to practice. I'm  
> extremely proud to say a number of Seeds at City graduates have secured  
> employment in this rapidly growing field as farmers, educators,  
> edible landscape design/contractors, food growing consultants and a  
> number are now operating their own entrepreneurial enterprises.
> Creating a need
> Seeds at City is not immune to the stresses of the economic status we  
> all are experiencing. One way we can become more self sufficient is  
> to generate our own funding needed for offering additional courses  
> per semester (currently only two courses per semester are funded).  
> The sustainable agriculture program consists of 12 state approved  
> courses that make up one associates degree and five certificates.
> Our plan is to grow seasonal organic heirloom vegetable, flower and  
> herb starts appropriate for our growing conditions and market them  
> to local home gardeners, family farms and operating a Starts CSA  
> program (community supported agriculture) where customers will get  
> fresh starts four times throughout the year.
> So a greenhouse is needed; luckily we have the land already to put  
> it on. Also, by being resourceful farmers we have transformed the  
> original farm site from a standard resource demanding landscape, to  
> a teaming, biologically-rich, urban, food forest complete with over  
> sixty fruits trees (this summer we are expecting their first big  
> crop). And with this, we have created the need for a fence around  
> the farm. We have hesitated on fencing until we found one that did  
> not resemble a prison yard and we found a number of styles that are  
> commonly used on farms (wow! who would have thought?)
> Give anything you can
> The following link will take you to our Kickstarter page where you  
> will be asked to contribute. If we hit our financial goal we all  
> win. If we don't, we don't get any of the contributions people have  
> pledged. In the event we don't meet the goal I single handedly will  
> have to build a greenhouse and construct the farm fence and I'm cool  
> with this, heck! in fact it's already on my list of "things to do".  
> I do feel you'll enjoy the Kickstarter video and be inspired by the  
> words of our future farmers. If you feel the urge to pass this on,  
> please do.
> Peace, Paul
> Seeds at City farm manager/educator
> http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1243018777/seedscity-urban-farm-shoots-greenhouse

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