LA SIEMBRA- Midtown farm
La Siembra, Spanish for “The Season of Sowing"
The primary goal of La Siembra: Sowing a New Model of Community Engagement through Urban Agriculture is a project that is to transform a closed public elementary school campus Julia into a neighborhood resource that can help feed, educate, employ and empower local residents toward a more resilient, sustainable and hopeful future.
The University of Arizona (UA) Community and School Garden Program (CSGP) has been partnering with the Flowers and Bullets Collective (FBC), a grassroots group of 22 active members, on community-based garden projects for the past five years.
La Siembra is a prime example of how a community development initiative can have a substantial impact upon inner-city neighborhood residents and change their lives for the better.
La Siembra will produce a “safe and just space for humanity” where the negative effects of climate change, pollution, biodiversity loss and water use, and problematic zoning and land-use, can be mitigated by an inclusive, adaptive re-use of a 10-acre vacant public elementary school campus.
A key outcome of the La Siembra project will be to create a new model for community groups to partner with the UA in order to break down the institutional barriers that so often divide us.
All partners will contribute substantially to each component of the Midtown Farm/Julia Keen Elementary School site development, and the training and mentorship opportunities that will be afforded through this process will help FBC members launch their own for-profit and nonprofit business ventures to help the project prevail into the future.
This work is supported by the Agnese Nelms Haury Program in Environment and Social Justice.