After months of evaluating innovative organizations with measurable impacts on hunger, water access, and disparity, we are finally announcing the second recipient of our super-sized Compassionate Impact Grant (CIG): Boston Farms Community Land Trust.
Land security is food security.
Boston Farms Community Land Trust (Boston Farms) acquires vacant urban land; improves it; and turns it over to collaborative urban famers. This feeds the community and provides a living for largely Black and Brown people in the neighborhoods of Mattapan, Dorchester, and Roxbury—where the majority of Boston Farms staff and board members live.
These are low-income areas highly impacted by COVID-19, rising home costs, lack of food opportunities… but where community engagement is a strength.
Boston Farms already serves an estimated 200 families there, including 50 that access farm-fresh food, herbs, and flowers through direct sales; and about 150 through placemaking, environmental improvements, and social impact.
The Compassionate Impact Grant will be a game-changer.
The CIG will help Boston Farms…
- Make more land available
- Create durable farm infrastructure and make land quality improvements
- Help urban farmers grow, sell, and distribute crops, and
- Ensure reclaimed land is led through collective determination by a neighborhood-based coalition.
They’ll do this by applying the funds to…
- Launch Neighborhood Advisory Groups that will make decisions about their local land, and eventually become leadership of Boston Farms.
- Implement software to help with sales and business growth
- Create their next three-year Strategic Plan
These projects will dramatically improve Boston Farms’ long-term infrastructure, helping them track impact, build relationships, connect neighbors, and sustain the conditions for neighborhood control of the land. They’ll also become better able to gauge their effectiveness through data.
We’ll also provide support to any volunteers that wish to get involved with Boston Farms through our GO Teams. They will have the opportunity to help farmers with the demanding work of growing food and cultivating land and help be part of collective decisions about the farms.
We think all this makes Boston Farms the perfect grantee for the CIG program, which will award them an unrestricted $150,000 over three-years.
You’ll be hearing a lot more in coming months about Boston Farms and the impact you help them make. Your support made this grant possible, and we thank you deeply for it. We hope you are as excited as we are.