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Eat to Live Farm in Englewood Gets a Helping Hand from the Cedar Tree Foundation

Angelic Organics Learning Center is excited to announce a generous grant from the Cedar Tree Foundation to support the Eat to Live (E2L) project in the Englewood neighborhood of Chicago. Angelic Organics Learning Center and the E2L partners are installing an urban agriculture campus at the intersection of 70th Place and South Princeton Avenue, incorporating both an Urban Farm Incubator and a Community and Learning Garden. Vernice King at the Eat to Live Garden in Englewood, E2L, urban agriculture, urban farming, chicago

The Urban Farm Incubator will cover nearly an acre of city land with outdoor growing spaces and 7,200 square feet of passive solar greenhouses. Through the incubator, we will provide 2-6 beginning urban farmers per year with the facilities and support to launch their farm businesses. Growers may opt to sell to neighbors through an on-site market stand, or through an affiliated Healthy Food Hub. The adjacent Community and Learning Garden sits on two city lots, and provides a resource for families and Chicago Public School students to learn to grow, get, cook and eat healthy foods through year-round events and educational programming.

Support from the Cedar Tree Foundation is critical during the next two years, as we expand from managing a Community and Learning Garden on two city lots to developing a full Urban Agriculture campus on nearly one acre. This campus will support the launch of farm microenterprises, while engaging immediate residents and the broader Englewood community in building a vibrant community-based food system.

The E2L project will be developed through a participatory community development process that engages Black-led organizations and allies with residents of Englewood to address the expressed needs of residents to get, grow and eat good food. As such, it will serve as a powerful model for replication in Englewood and other low-income neighborhoods in Chicago (and beyond) and will help to influence the nature of the City’s first urban agriculture district.

At the end of the project, we expect that the following changes will have taken place in the Englewood neighborhood:

  • Establishment of a 1 acre urban agriculture campus in Englewood by 2016, complete with four hoop houses, as well as outdoor growing spaces, and an adjacent community garden. The campus serves both as a food production site and a demonstration site for innovative growing and community development strategies.
  • The farm incubates new 2-6 new farmers per year, who receive support and resources to establish their businesses, and grow food that may be sold through the farm and through local outlets.
  • Each year, over 750 Englewood residents (youth and adults) participate in educational programming where they can grow food for their families and others in need, and learn how to get, grow, cook and eat more healthy, affordable, fresh food.
  • A Healthy Food Hub buying club based at nearby Harvard Elementary serves as a resource for healthy and affordable food options, prioritizing local and Black-owned businesses.
  • A coalition of Englewood residents, businesses and organizations exists to determine the future of the neighborhood food system, and to connect and catalyze conversations among community groups and residents.
  • The Englewood neighborhood has strong local leadership to strengthen the community’s self-determination and resilience.

For ways that you can support this project, you can contribute financially on our website or contact Denise at 815.389.8455, ext. 162 to learn more about volunteer opportunities.

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PDF icon Eat to Live Farm Campus Concept Plan551.48 KB