A CENTER FOR GRASSROOTS ORGANIZING & REGENERATIVE AGRICULTURE
WE HAVE A MATCHING GRANT FOR UP TO $15,000 through January!
If you're going to donate, please do so soon and our awesome supporter will match you dollar for dollar!
Thanks so much for all the generous support so far. We have raised a total of about $25,000! Thought the figures on this online fundraiser appear lower, we are meeting with great success.
Now we’re raising funds for infrastructure and programs. We’re fortunate to have found a beautiful farm and we think it's the perfect place for people from different social movements and society at large to meet each other, work together, and make commitments to shaping a livable future.
So far we have:
- Purchased a 160+ acre farm!
- Assembled our Steering Council (see below, or grassrootscenter.net/about/)
- Done tons of cleanup, repairs, and are moving ahead with program startup.
Check our a lot more of what we're up to a HERE
Thanks again to everyone who has put in the sweat and funds so far! We're rolling!!!
Find out more on our MISSION
Here's a list of projects that we're working on, followed by other opportunities that may be a good match for support from specific funders.
* The Barn: Insulation, Repair, and a New Floor - $22,000: We are removing the dairy infrastructure from the cow barn, insulating and installing a new floor in this beautiful 88 foot by 36 foot space! The view is excellent from this spot, and having a level insulated floor will be our real entry into being able to host large movement groups and events at the center YEAR-ROUND! The new floor is key, and we can do the installation with $13,000 in materials.
* Tractor Implements & Maintenance- $3,000: We have a brand new 4-wheel-drive John Deere committed to the project! We need harrows and to cover on-going maintenance costs of this awesome piece of equipment.
* Cleanup - $1,300: Basically a few industrial dumpster loads of trash and debris need to be removed, and we need to buy food for the volunteers and work parties that are going to help make that happen.
AGRICULTURAL OPPORTUNITIES - Help new farmers get started! (more in the farm below)
* Sugarbush Prep - $13,000: 15 acres of Saplines, taps, and the collection tanks!
* Seeds, tools, irrigation, and soil amendments - $9,300
These efforts will make a major difference in the feeling and the usability of the place. There’s so much more. If you’d like to see our budget or agriculture business plan just ask. Help us out, or get in touch if you would like your donation to go to a specific project. THE STEERING COUNCIL
A Steering Council has assembled to provide support and accountability to this broad effort.
Charlie Megeso-Delaney: Wabunowin Dawn Society/Environmental & Social Justice Activist - Nulhegan Abenaki
Ashanti Alston: Former Black Panther and ex-Political Prisoner/Luminary - Providence, RI
Marita Canedo: Migrant Justice/Youth Organizer - Essex, Vermont
Meghan Stotko: Rural Vermont/Farmer - Craftsbury, Vermont
Graham Unangst-Rufenacht: Rural Vermont/Farmer - Calais, Vermont
Henry Harris: Vermont Climate Union/the Make/National Lawyers Guild - Marshfield, Vermont
The farm is an important aspect of the project, and is oriented toward the challenging prospects in the future of agriculture.
-> We are looking for farmers to come and get some projects rolling here, potentially structured as a temporary free lease on acreage.
The threats of economic, political, and climate crisis are mainstream, but plans to cope with these issues are rare. The climate crisis is already showing up as agricultural collapse and market breakdowns all over the world. Our response is to show what can be done with land and people dedicated to their relationship to it, building explicit relationships between resilient agro-ecology and the social movements that depend on it. Immediately we’re planning on building a big greenhouse, repairing the barns, preparing 15 acres of sugarbush for sap collection, and planting out medicinal Herbs, blueberries, asparagus, and other perennials. We're already grazing 30 dairy cows to rejuvenate the pasture land. We're also asking for proposals from farmers and others for projects on the farm. We're looking for productive, educational agricultural projects that address different elements of climate crisis and a more just distribution of resources.
We intend to build and promote rugged and cooperative agricultural systems for the long haul. Visitors will work on the farm and learn about food-based cooperative economics and resilience in the climate crisis. Our measure of agricultural success is how many people we can get involved in sustaining agriculture on site, and ultimately we’d like to be part of this work all over the region.
We’re involved in many hubs of social justice and grassroots organizing in Vermont, the Northeast, and across the US. I have a lot of confidence that the people and networks already connected to this project will accomplish amazing things together on this hilltop, not to mention the with new people they’ll bring in. I have deep gratitude for the family and old friends who been involved so far. So much thanks to Marita Canedo, Jack Lazor, Jade Walker, Tom Gilbert, Ashanti Alston (who helped start this dream so long ago), Earl Kooperkamp, Corine Fairbanks, and too many others to list for their encouragement and ongoing support. I’m very excited to see what they come up with as our doors open.
This effort is coming together in response to an unexpected opportunity, so planning will be in full swing after we get moved in!
Feel free to get in touch, and expect more invitations to get involved. In the meantime please get generous with this fundraiser and help us get started on the work.
You can also send a check.
Make checks payable to Global Justice Ecology Project, with “Highland Farm” in the memo line, and mail to:
Highland Farm ℅ G J E P
266 Elmwood Avenue, Suite 307, Buffalo, NY 14222
Let us know if you’d like us to add you to our updates list. firstname.lastname@example.org.
I hope this note finds you working hard and having a good time. Maybe we'll get a chance to do those things together before long.
Ps - I would like to dedicate this first attempt to describe what we’re trying to do to the inspiration of Ella Baker and Myles Horton, to the example set by the Caracoles Movement in Chiapas, MX and to Joe Lee.